11 Most Endangered Historic Places

Downtown New Orleans

Year Listed: 1993
Location: New Orleans, Louisiana
Threat: Development

Significance

Having survived wars, hurricanes and a boom-or-bust economy, New Orleans now faces the potentially detrimental impact of the world's largest land-based gambling casino, currently slated for construction at the foot of historic Canal Street. Two landmark residential neighborhoods flank the proposed site of the casino, which would generate massive traffic congestion, an increased demand for parking and undesirable spin-off development. In the historic Warehouse District, now undergoing rebirth as a vibrant area of apartments, restaurants and shops, residents believe the huge gaming facility would be an incompatible neighbor. And the famed French Quarter would be doubly hard-hit: on one side, the new casino; on another, a temporary gambling hall and proposed "entertainment zone." Without careful planning and renewed commitment to preserving and protecting historic buildings and the quality of life in New Orleans' inner-city residential neighborhoods, the flashy new casino will be a disaster for one of the world's unique cities.