As Americans everywhere prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving, New Orleanians have something to be thankful for — the reopening of Armstrong Park. That’s the subject of Clancy’s Commentary this week, by Eyewitness News political analyst and Gambit columnist Clancy DuBos
Clancy DuBos / Eyewitness News Political Analyst
Among the many reasons to give thanks this year is the reopening of Armstrong Park. The park was shuttered for 18 months as work crews tried to undo all the things that went wrong with former Mayor Ray Nagin’s ill-fated plans — and public contracts — to restore the park after Hurricane Katrina.
Nagin actually had a good idea for the park: a sculpture garden commemorating the cultural icons of New Orleans. Unfortunately, like so many of Nagin’s ideas, the execution of the mayor’s vision fell far short of the promise. Work on the park under Nagin, new Mayor Mitch Landrieu fired the contractor and had to collect on the construction bond to pay for a slew of repairs.
All that is history now. The park reopened last Friday with a brass band, a completed sculpture garden, and a manicured new look. Once again, the park beckons locals and visitors alike — just in time for some great shows at the Mahalia Jackson Theatre, which Nagin, to his credit, restored to even greater glory than it knew before Katrina.
At long last, the city has done Satchmo proud.
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