NEW ORLEANS - The implosion of the former Pallas Hotel has been set for July 22, according to the State Division of Administration.

The blighted building has sat in various stages of some use or non use for years, Currently it is being gutted in anticipation of the implosion. The site will be used as part of the University Medical Center complex.

'Removing this eyesore will make way for one of the most important developments in our city's history and takes us one step closer to bringing top-notch medical care and research to our region,' said Mayor Mitch Landrieu. 'We are working closely with the State to ensure that this implosion goes smoothly and has minimal impact on the surrounding community.'

The Division of Administration said that to prepare for the implosion, a section of streets about five blocks by six blocks, including the entire footprint of the new University Medical Center hospital, will be closed to pedestrians, residents and traffic to create a secure perimeter around the implosion site.

The New Orleans Police Department will do a door-to-door inspection of the closed area around the site prior to the implosion. NOPD and State Police will secure the perimeter of the implosion area the day of the event.

A complete closure of a section of Interstate 10 both east and west bound will occur before the implosion. Interstate 10 will reopen after any dust is removed from the road and the structure has been inspected by the Department of Transportation and Development. The closure is expected to last at least eight hours.

Business owners and homeowners will be able to take simple precautions to protect their businesses and houses, including closing all windows and doors, sealing any area where dust might enter into a building and turning off an air conditioning units or fans that might pull dust into a building.

The implosion is not expected to damage nearby buildings or residences. People outside of the immediate vicinity of the implosion site will not be able to feel an impact.

The Pallas Hotel implosion is expected to last no more than eight or nine seconds. Following the blast a cloud of dust will emerge from around the wreckage. The dust will be heaviest in the area immediately surrounding the former hotel.

Generally, heavy dust will only travel between 150 to 175 feet from the site of the implosion, with lighter dust settling as far as five or six blocks away, based on the prevailing winds on the morning of the implosion. The dust cloud is expected to dissipate within 10 minutes. The dust is not toxic, but people with allergies or respiratory problems should avoid the area near the implosion site for a few hours.

Air quality and vibration monitoring will be conducted before, during, and after the implosion. Inspection of I-10 and clean-up of the area will begin immediately following the implosion. Shutdown duration is subject to clean-up and inspection results on the day of the event.

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