SFNO/Jazzland Discussion Thread

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Re: SFNO/Southern Star Saga Discussion Thread

Postby stingrock23 » Thu Nov 11, 2010 8:37 pm

^ yeah, New Orleans East is the one major area of the city that really hasn't come back. Just ineptitude and lack of any decisions being made on the property have allowed it to just sit. I just hate to see it sit there rotting away.

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Re: SFNO/Southern Star Saga Discussion Thread

Postby Brandy524 » Mon Nov 15, 2010 10:10 am

It didn't look like he was portraying anyone in a bad light, but simply documenting the park and the state that it's in. And as someone else said, he wasn't trying to make any money off of it. And he was in the park with the city's approval, albeit for filming something else, but at least he didn't break in like so many others have done.

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Sports complex in New Orleans East stalled, amusement park i

Postby jps294 » Mon Dec 13, 2010 8:28 pm

In The News...

While in office, former Mayor Ray Nagin told New Orleanians to expect a Nickelodeon amusement park, in place of the shuttered Six Flags site, by the end of 2010. With less than three weeks left in the year, there are still no definitive plans for the property and progress on what was supposed to be an adjacent sports complex has also been stalled indefinitely.

Off interstate-10 in New Orleans East, an unusual sight for out-of-towners and a disappointing one for locals—the Six Flags theme park sits idle with rusty roller coasters, overgrown lots, and an entrance sign that reads 'Closed for Storm.'

At the nearby Vucinovich’s Restaurant, co-owner Russell Vucinovich says his still struggling community could use a new amusement park, but adds he’s seen too many plans fall though.

"You don't believe nothing no more,” said Vucinovich. “These politicians, they promise you stuff and nothing happens. You can't even get the grass cut, next door."

Documents obtained by FOX 8, show the company, 3 Wise Men Entertainment, Inc., is once again set to meet with the city's Industrial Development Board in hopes of eventually scoring $200 million dollars in bonds to redevelop the site. The company was expected to present its plan during the board’s meeting on Tuesday, but according to a board representative, the company says it will have to reschedule since its officials in Minnesota have had their flights cancelled because of heavy snow.

According to state records, 3 Wise Men is a Baton Rouge company that is owned by a pair of Minnesota based firms: Pink Caste Trust owns 10 percent and AB Moten Corporation owns 90 percent.

Fox 8 was unable to reach representatives with either of the companies.

Tuesday will mark the second time 3 Wise Men has cancelled its presentation to the city. It was 8 months ago when the company cancelled its initial meeting with the board, after touting a plan that would have had Nickelodeon involved. In its revised application, that's no longer the case.

Former Mayor Ray Nagin first put a spotlight on Nickelodeon in August of 2009. He and then-councilwoman Cynthia Willard-Lewis announced the children’s cable network was going to open a brand new amusement park on the Six Flags site by the end of 2010.

“The family that gets slimed together, enjoys quality time together,” Lewis said back in 2009.

Councilman Jon Johnson, who now represents New Orleans East, says he's moving at a much slower pace, for now, reserving judgment on the '3 Wise Men' plan and 3 or 4 other plans from interested developers, he says, he’s not ready to name publically.

"Quite frankly, I don't want to get any false hopes up on the community, again,” Johnson said. The District E councilman admits it could be years before a new park is developed.

"Probably,” said Johnson. “In light of the economy we're confronted with."

The mayor's office isn't endorsing any plan either. It would only say that the proposal by 3 Wise Men is in the beginning stages and doesn't prevent any other developer from vying for the site.

"If they're successful at finding financing, then the city will be able to negotiate with them as well as other potential developers,” said Andy Kopplin, Deputy Mayor/CAO.

Vucinovich just hopes the city finally gets it right and avoids taking residents and business owners on just another ride.

"They need to go after it, grasp it, and get it rolling."

Meanwhile, the city is still paying $2 million each year to repay HUD loans that were taken out for the Six Flags site, according to Ryan Berni, Landrieu administration spokesperson. The city, he says, must continue paying until 2017, when the loan is paid in full.

Per the September 18, 2009 settlement reached between the city and Six Flags, the city was paid $3 million and was promised a portion of the insurance proceeds collected by Six Flags in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

“The Law Department is following up with Six Flags on that part of the settlement that would give the City 25 percent of all insurance proceeds that exceed $75 million,” Berni said.

FOX 8 is also learning of new details concerning the sports complex that was proposed for the 75-acres of city owned property adjacent to the Six Flags site in New Orleans East.

The developer, Big League Dreams, says its original pitch to the city is no longer on the table after a lack of traction inside City Hall.

“It doesn’t appear we are going to pursue this situation any further,” said Rick Odekirk, Managing Director for the company.

City Council President Arnie Fielkow has long championed the project, but tells FOX 8 it simply didn't garner enough support from lawmakers, including Mayor Landrieu.

"I think we need city leadership to come together and say this is something that we want,” Fielkow said. “If it’s something that we really do want, then I think we can seriously begin some discussions with Big League Dreams to talk about maybe a better financing model that would be more affordable for the city."

Through a statement Monday evening, Landrieu called the plan an “excellent project,” but said the city has yet to identify a funding source to construct the $25 million facility.

“Over the past year, I have worked with the City Council to determine how to best use our limited resources,” Landrieu wrote. “We also held community meetings to hear priorities directly from citizens, and Big League Dreams was not one of the priorities identified by citizens.”

Odekrik says before year's end, his company will meet to consider altering its business model to make the project more desirable for New Orleans by lessening the dollar amount the city would have to pay up front to build the site.

Meanwhile, Landrieu says his administration has prioritized over 100 other projects, which are all fully funded.

“This included a significant investment in parks and playgrounds as well as several major investments in New Orleans East and the Lower Ninth Ward that will serve as a catalyst for the revitalization of these communities,” Landrieu said.


http://www.fox8live.com/news/local/story/Sports-complex-in-New-Orleans-East-stalled/F8TNg9YV7kacud2uKcCKww.cspx

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Re: SFNO/Southern Star Saga Discussion Thread

Postby chadster » Mon Dec 13, 2010 9:14 pm

That's one bond I wouldn't buy. It's deeply sickening to think a company has to mooch of off the taxpayers to build a business they will profit on. Sure you can make the argument that a few businesses might benefit from the site being developed again, but is it 200 million worth? Will the people embrace it, support it, visit it, help it grow? That's something that's already been answered once. If it was worth saving SF's would have saved it. New parks are a risky business these days as we all have seen. Come to think of it, I'm curious to research how many new parks have opened in the US in the last five years that are still open, I'll have to check on that.

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Re: SFNO/Southern Star Saga Discussion Thread

Postby spaceace12 » Tue Dec 14, 2010 8:20 pm

One thing I learned with my three trips down there. The big tourism area is the French Quarter and then after that is the lower 9th. After that, unless you know someone down there or have a personal attachment like I do, you don't really stray far from the Quarter or your car in the lower ninth in the daytime and def. not at night anywhere other then the French quarter.

The block I worked on in the 8th ward back in Nov. 2009 still have only two homes occupied back in August of this year. The rest were either still gutted (one home wasn't gutted) or tore down. You have to have the population that wants a park (and they don't have the population to support it now or ever and they are a lot of poor people down there financially {but they are rich in other areas, but that is a whole story by itself}).

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Re: SFNO/Southern Star Saga Discussion Thread

Postby spaceace12 » Wed Dec 22, 2010 10:25 am

Came across this FB page the other day.....

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Abandoned-Six-Flags-Project-Renew/178552918836594

the fact that someone thinks that a "world class theme park" could be built there and make it makes me laugh. Maybe they will buy the dipper if/when the current sale fails.

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Re: SFNO/Southern Star Saga Discussion Thread

Postby marielgates » Tue Jan 04, 2011 11:42 pm

My boyfriend sent me that video that that "Teddy" figure did, and, living in Baton Rouge and that having been the first amusement park I ever went to as a kid, I was fascinated and curious as to how I was completely unaware of the closed down park. I did hella ton research and read stories of people "breaking in" and taking pictures, and decided I wanted to (being a photographer and a person who loves abandoned things) and we finally took the trip the other day!

I have a few things to add. They are not demolishing the park, if that hasn't already been stated. I read the past few pages of this but not sure if that was ever put. And they did salvage the Batman, which is now the Goliath in the San Antonio Fiesta Texas Six Flags park (another ironic thing because I go there every summer with my youth group and we always ride that ride the most. Crazy to think of how it was the first roller coaster I rode as a child, under a different name.)

I'm torn between whether I think they should tear it down and move on, because obviously New Orleans just isn't the place for an amusement park. I mean, how sad is it that Jazzland didn't survive for hardly two years and SFNO survived for only three after that! Who has ever heard of such a huge amusement park dying out after only 5 years running? It's insane. But at the same time, there are so many abandoned things across the country that are "taking up space" in some people's minds, but in others, such as the creative and adventurous type, it's an opportunity to take pictures/film/explore.

I told my younger sister how sad I feel towards such a huge park, once filled with the laughter of children, teens, and adults, now empty, graffitied, and gathering dust gone to waste, destroyed. And she said "sad is when someone dies, not when a park floods."

I don't know.

Here is part 1 to the pictures I took. Part two will be up eventually.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/marielgates/sets/72157625733175008/

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Re: SFNO/Southern Star Saga Discussion Thread

Postby Brandy524 » Wed Jan 05, 2011 10:34 am

I love to see pictures of this place. It's so sad to see park in such a desolate state and know that it was once bustling and full of life.

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Re: SFNO/Southern Star Saga Discussion Thread

Postby redfoot12 » Wed Jan 05, 2011 1:52 pm

marielgates wrote:I mean, how sad is it that Jazzland didn't survive for hardly two years and SFNO survived for only three after that! Who has ever heard of such a huge amusement park dying out after only 5 years running? It's insane.


I guess you never heard of Hard Rock Park...
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Re: SFNO/Southern Star Saga Discussion Thread

Postby jedimaster1227 » Wed Jan 05, 2011 2:06 pm

redfoot12 wrote:I guess you never heard of Hard Rock Park...


You've just identified the one of the biggest problems of Hard Rock Park. :lmao:
Change the scheme, Alter the mood! Electrify the boys and girls if you would be so kind!

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