"The investment in our community, the investment in our families, our children, across the board, will continue even after this day, because we are on our way around here in Central City," Cantrell said.
The project featured a $6.4-million renovation of the two-story, 24,000-square-foot facility to provide upgraded spaces to accommodate a daycare and the Central City EOC offices, a Head Start Nursery facility, and the satellite branch for the New Orleans Public Library. The building infrastructure was gutted and replaced to meet Life Safety and Americans with Disabilities Act compliance with new electrical and mechanical systems, elevators, and stairways and interior finishes. The building façade has undergone a major upgrade with a covered canopy walkway and landscaping. Most of the budget came from FEMA funding, while $211,000 was city-funded through bonds.
This new facilities’ features include:
- Increased hours of operation
- Dedicated areas for children and teens
- 2,500 more materials in the library collection
- Outdoor space for programs and events
- Two onsite parking lots
The city also was represented by Emily Wolff, Director, Mayor’s Office of Youth & Families; Gabriel Morley, Executive Director/City Librarian, New Orleans Public Library; Vincent A. Smith, Director, Capital Projects Administration; and Jay H. Banks, City Councilmember, District B. Vangie Moffett, Center Manager, Central City EOC, spoke on behalf of the organization, although many other community leaders stood with Cantrell, including retired City Councilmember Jim Singleton.
The contractors on the project included: Verges Rome Architects, APC, Tuna Construction, and Miguel Viteri.