The architects that shaped New Orleans are remembered through street and building names, but their most lasting legacy is the way the city looks.
Jacque Nicholas Buissiere de Pouilly arrived in New Orleans from France in 1833 and designed many buildings, including the St. Louis Exchange Hotel. De Pouilly’s most significant contribution, though, was the design of the romantic St. Louis Cathedral to replace New Orleans’ original church in Place d’ Armes.
One of the best remembered architects is James Gallier Sr., known for the Municipal Hall built in 1853 and later named after him. Gallier also designed the Pontabla apartments on Jackson Square and the French Opera House.
Prolific Henry Howard designed more than 280 buildings in Louisiana, including the Nottoway and Madewood plantations. He also designed several homes for the wealthy of New Orleans, including the Robert H. Short house in the Garden District.
Among others, city residents also know the work of Emile Weil, who designed the Saenger Theatre and the Dixie Brewery and James Freret, who designed St. Patrick’s Hall and other buildings in the central business district.
The work of more recent architects put a modern spin on the city: Moise Goldstein’s firm designed New Orleans City Hall and main library, buildings at Tulane and Dillard university and the original Moisant airport.
Curtis and Davis architects designed the Superdome and the Rivergate convention center.