NEW ORLEANS -- Although the fish weren’t biting Monday, Ron Osborne says casting a few lines at the Lakefront is a favorite past time.
However, Osborne said the area too often is inaccessible.
"I'm hoping they fix the lights so we can fish at night again, because they run you off right at dark every night," he said. "Every time we have a small storm, the lake shuts down for like a week or so, you know, because all the dirt washes out to the streets and no cars can pass through here."
Work is underway to change that. Several weeks ago, construction began on a $6 million effort to beef up the seawall -- both for erosion prevention and beautification purposes.
The first phase of the project is expected to take about a year to complete.
It's another step in what has been a long road to bring the area back.
The lakefront has always been a popular destination during summertime holidays, but some said they’ve noticed much smaller crowds the last few years – especially because of the construction zones.
"It used to be crowded all the time for holidays of any sort -- especially (Memorial Day) and the Fourth of July and it's just amazing that it's not. I guess people felt like, well, it's under construction, we'll wait to see how it turns out," said Jamie Ewart. "They're doing a lot of work. Hopefully it'll make it look better."
That feeling is shared by many, but Monday, folks still gathered all along Lakeshore Drive.
For Shinedricka Lee and friends, it was the perfect Memorial Day setting.
"We’re just enjoying the breeze, eating some crawfish, a couple of snacks and everything, having a couple drinks of wine -- enjoying the breeze," Lee said.