New Orleans Mardi Gras Parades to Avoid Collapsed Hotel Site
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Two major New Orleans Mardi Gras parades will alter their traditional routes to avoid the site of the partially collapsed Hard Rock Hotel that crumpled in October, killing three workers and injuring dozens more.
The intersection beside New Orleans’ historic French Quarter where the hotel was being built has been blocked since Oct. 12, when the upper floors of the unfinished building collapsed, The Times-Picayune/The New Orleans Advocate reported. Demolition of the site isn’t set to begin until after Mardi Gras, which lands on Feb. 25 this year.
The hotel was under construction at the corner of Rampart Street and Canal Street, a broad boulevard just outside the Quarter that is lined with restaurants, hotels and retailers. Canal, which carries six lanes of traffic divided by a wide median where streetcars roll, separates the Quarter from the city’s main business district.
The Endymion parade is one of three “Super Krewes” that includes more than 3,000-riders across its 81 floats and draws thousands of revelers lining the streets to watch, according to the organization. In addition to a slight route change to navigate it around the Canal Street blockage, the parade will also conclude at the Morial Convention Center rather than its usual spot at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome due to renovations, the newspaper reported.
The Zulu parade, put on by the more than 100-year-old Zulu Social Aid and Pleasure Club, is among the oldest parades of the Carnival, according to the group. It will also follow a slightly altered route to bypass Canal Street, though much of it will remain the same.
The city hasn’t announced route changes for any other parades.