The vacant Irish Channel building where Turnbull Bakeries once churned out Melba toast will be demolished to make way for single-family homes under a plan endorsed Tuesday by the City Planning Commission.
The final decision is up to the City Council. The site is in Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell’s district.
The Planning Commission voted 5-0, with four members absent, to approve a request to change the former bakery’s zoning from industrial to residential. The massive green warehouse has municipal addresses on First, St. Thomas and Soraparu streets.
The commercial bakery shut down in 2012 after 105 years in business.
The plan from Livewell Properties LLC and Webre Consulting calls for dividing the property into 15 lots of varying sizes. Prospective homeowners will then be able to buy either a vacant lot or one with a home already constructed on it. The homes, to be built by the same company, will be designed to mirror the existing Irish Channel neighborhood, the project’s lead developer said in a letter to neighbors.
Several other buildings on the same block, including Raphael Academy, a two-family cottage and three two-family residences, are not a part of the plan, which has the support of the Irish Channel Neighborhood Association.
The warehouse’s demolition has been approved by the Historic District Landmarks Commission.
In other matters, the Planning Commission approved plans for a 132-room hotel at 2001 Canal St., across the street from the new University Medical Center complex. Developers propose adding two stories to an empty five-story office building, which would operate as Hotel Loren and Suites.
The commission deferred action on a request to convert a former bottling plant in Faubourg Marigny into a live performance venue. The Trash Palace would host dance, theatrical and musical performances and occasionally show films. It also would be available for rental by corporate groups and for parties and weddings.
The planning staff recommended denial of the proposed reuse of the L-shaped building at Chartres Street and Elysian Fields Avenue because its proposed 777-person maximum capacity might result in increased traffic, noise and parking problems in an already busy area.
Vendors at the Frenchmen Art Market, which is held in a parking lot at the rear of the building, also urged the board to vote against it because it would require the market to reduce its hours of operation.
Commissioner Kyle Wedberg urged the property owner to consider a plan for the venue that would have less impact on the surrounding neighborhood and to return with a revised plan in June.