Tags: Stinky | New | Orleans | Tries | Clean

Stinky New Orleans Tries to Clean Up

Thursday, 21 February 2002 12:00 AM

A nonprofit alliance launched the two-year initiative after business researchers reported increasing complaints from visitors about the unsightly litter and smells in the crowded streets of the historic district.

"They were doing exit interviews, especially with conventioneers, and conventioneers were saying we would never book another convention here because it's dirty and smelly," said Lyn Reed, president of the Vieux Carre Alliance and a resident of the quarter.

Tourism is the lifeblood of New Orleans, and the complaints were enough impetus for the city's hospitality industry to join with residents of the quarter and government officials to form the group and get a program started to clean up the area.

A sanitation company was hired to pick up litter, sweep the sidewalks and steam-clean streets and sidewalks. The crews, dressed in blue uniforms, have been outfitted with three small tractors and other equipment for the cleanup program.

Steve Ferran, general manager of Omni Royal Orleans Hotel, said the program showed that progress can be achieved by a public-private partnership.

"The French Quarter is the crown jewel of New Orleans, known all over the world as a premier destination," he said. "We are committed to working together to improve the quality of life in the Vieux Carre for our residents and visitors."

The cost of the cleanup is being funded by the New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corp., New Orleans Metropolitan Convention and Visitors Bureau and Ernest N. Morial Convention Center.

The program is designed to enhance city services in the area.

"The success of the pilot program is contingent upon the city maintaining a base level of services in the French Quarter," Reed said. "The alliance is working closely with the Department of Sanitation to ensure this occurs."

Officials attribute the buildup of grime to the heavy concentration of tourists who visit the Vieux Carre each year. It has been especially heavy this year with the Super Bowl and the annual Mardi Gras celebration.

Copyright 2002 by United Press International.

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A nonprofit alliance launched the two-year initiative after business researchers reported increasing complaints from visitors about the unsightly litter and smells in the crowded streets of the historic district. They were doing exit interviews, especially with...
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2002-00-21
Thursday, 21 February 2002 12:00 AM
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