A five-member selection committee of city officials has been formed to review 10 proposals for the redevelopment of the former World Trade Center building at the foot of Canal Street. The panel is expected to select one of the projects by late March.
The committee consists of Deputy Mayor and Chief Administrative Officer Andy Kopplin; Cindy Connick, executive director of the Canal Street Development Corp.; Bill Gilchrist, the city’s director of place-based planning; City Planning Commission Executive Director Bob Rivers; and Ashleigh Gardere, executive director of the city’s Network for Economic Opportunity.
Connick, Gilchrist and Kopplin all served on the selection committee during the city’s last attempt to find a developer for the site. Gardere and Rivers replace Cedric Grant and Jeff Hebert on the panel.
Both Grant and Hebert recently have taken on new duties in city government. Grant, deputy mayor for infrastructure and acting CEO of the New Orleans Building Corp., now is also executive director of the Sewerage & Water Board. Hebert, executive director of the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority, is also the city’s new chief resilience officer.
The city on Wednesday also released a timeline for the selection process. The committee will meet for the first time on Monday to discuss the applicants and make a short list of the developers it would like to move on in the process. Those developers will receive a formal request for proposals and be invited to make presentations to the selection committee on Feb. 16. The committee will discuss and score the proposals and presentations and select a developer for the site on March 23.
The city said it received 10 viable responses last month to its call for qualified applicants to turn the vacant riverfront building at 2 Canal St. into a “first-class commercial and/or mixed-use project.”
The property is widely considered to be one of the most valuable sites in New Orleans, but the city has struggled for years to find someone to redevelop the 33-story 1960s building. Repeated efforts have come to naught, including an attempt in April that failed after the city and the chosen developer could not agree on financial terms.
All of the proposals now up for consideration present a plan for a hotel or a combined hotel and apartments.
The developers and their proposals are:
- The Berger Co., MCC Real Estate and Ogden Development: a 300-room Conrad Hotel by Hilton and 225 Conrad Residences apartments.
- Carpenter & Co. Inc. and Woodward Interests LLC: a 350-room Four Seasons Hotel New Orleans and 40 apartments.
- Columbia Sussex: a 400-room hotel.
- Gatehouse Capital and Provident Realty: a 245-room hotel and 280 rental units.
- Geller Investment Co.: a 220- to 250-room hotel targeting the 45-and-under demographic, plus apartments.
- Hixon Developments: a Hard Rock Hotel, apartments and residential lease-purchase units.
- HRI Properties: a 252-room Andaz Hotel by Hyatt and 295 luxury apartments.
- ITM Development: a 684-room hotel and residences.
- Oxford Capital LLC: a 516-room Godfrey Hotel and 166 luxury apartments.
- Woodbine Development Corp., Monday Properties and Valencia Hotel Group: a 318-room Hotel Alessandra New Orleans, 240 luxury apartments and a jazz lounge.
The city also received a proposal from an individual, Samuel Burfict, that did not meet the requirements and will not be considered along with the others, a city spokesman said.