There’s a fabulous building in the center of New Orleans that has not been used for several years and, hopefully, will come to a use in the not-too-distant future.
It is commonly known as the Charity Hospital of Louisiana.
There are not any cases of illness going through it these days. The building is vacant and unused for any purpose today, but there are hopes some use of it will come in the near future.
Having been noted for its grand appearance over the years when its use was one of the busiest places in New Orleans in years past, there are now thoughts – in fact hopes and plans – for it to somewhat regain a need that will make it again serve a purpose.
Whether that purpose will be as great as that of its past is highly unlikely.
Chances are it will once again gain the label of “charity” in its title though it will not in any way carry close to the meaning. There is no expectation that it will resume the purpose it once had in which it was one of the busiest structures in southeast Louisiana.
The massive art deco Charity Hospital opened in 1939 as the second largest hospital in the nation. It was a fabulous structure from the beginning and gathered the attention of everyone who traveled in downtown New Orleans. It served the people of Louisiana until levees failed during Hurricane Katrina and flooded the hospital’s basement in 2005.
Developers of what evolves from the new occupancy of the gorgeous structure, Matthews Southwest based in Dallas, is partnering with local developers on a proposal for a $558 million, 1,200-room Omni hotel on land owned by the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center.
The former hospital’s location is in just about the most central part of the city. Whatever replaces our Charity Hospital there will be in one of the most desirable locations available in New Orleans.