Ever since the news broke that the Art House residents would be evicted today, there has been little to no official comment from the City or the Treme Civic Association. That is, until now. As I mentioned before, Red Cotton brought up legitimate concerns that are being raised about the Art House by Treme residents.
Michele Braden, president of the Esplanade Ridge/Treme Civic Association took the time to address all the of the concerns that have been brought up about the tree house. I've attached the entirety of the e-mail after the jump, but for all you people with short attention spans, here are some of the highlights:
Mr. de los Rios,
The property at 1614 Esplanade is zoned as residential. A group of individuals were allowed by the owner
to take it over for an art house. The property is in need of serious repair and there was a downed tree of some size in the side yard that had been ignored for some time. The first rather conspicuous violation
of the HDLC rules was the address on the building that was totally not in keeping with the scale or design
of the building.The neighborhood organization was not happy with this but felt in time they would be cited by
the HDLC and be required to change it. And then the complaints started to come in concerning music being
played until all hours on the weekends. Additionally there were complaints about trash on the street and in
the neutral ground. Complaints were also expressed about the structure which they we calling a "slide"
in the side yard that was very visible from the street.
After attending the NONPAC meeting at the 1st district police station which in large part opened up the
problems that they had been handling because of calls to them about noise ,I decided to visit Paul May's
office to see what permits had been issued. According to Mr. May no permits had been issued and he was
aware of health violations and problems with fire regulations. He also said that he had information concerning
a number of people using that as a residence far in excess of what was allowed. I also met with Elliot
Perkins,HDLC, but he felt he was not in a position to act as yet.Mary Cunningham of Councilman James
Carter's office was ask to coordinate the effort by Mr.May's office. Ms. Cunningham proceeded to turn all
reports over to Eraka Williams,Asst. City Attor. I spoke with Ms. Williams who instructed me to have the
membership send all specific incidents to her office to allow her to prepare the suit against the art house.
Sir it is very hard to live in this city. Esplanade Ridge has been struggling for sometime to improve the living conditions in the area. We are trying with the help of some very courageous people to stick it out .Our new
mayor bring us great hope for serious investors.
They were operating illegally and with no regard for the neighbors surrounding them. The police department
as well deserves some consideration. They cannot afford to send men out over and over because of the complaints.All they need to do is get legal and respect their neighbors. I cannot take credit. I think a lot
of people were fed up!