The statutory purpose of the FQMD is to strengthen the District as a vital component of Louisiana’s tourism industry; aid in the preservation of the District’s architecture, quaint charm and tout ensemble; beautify the District’s appearance; improve public safety, foster quality experiences and quality of life within the District; and improve commercial and residential vitality. The statutory functions of the FQMD include strategic planning, business and commercial development activities and administering capital improvement funds.
The FQMD ’s enabling legislation, in La. R.S. 25:799(G), also provides that the FQMD may:
- Create and maintain public restroom facilities
- Beautify the District and improve its streetscapes
- Enhance the walkability and pedestrian-friendly environment of the District
- Revitalize and nurture the cultural and historical features of the District
- Provide façade grants and incentives to utilize vacant buildings, upper floors and land
- Address transportation concerns
- Facilitate parking and mobility planning, strategies and management
- Develop and implement commercial planning, marketing and revitalization strategies
- Facilitate lighting and signage upgrades, repairs and replacements
- Aide in the repair of sidewalks, streets and related infrastructure
- Aide in video camera installation and monitoring
- Recruit public amenities and services
- Foster quality pedestrian experiences
- Foster regional and District character
- Facilitate removal and prevention of graffiti
Please note the boundaries of the FQMD in RED. Click here or on the map to enlarge and download.
Though spared from significant flood water damage from Hurricane Katrina, both the image and the infrastructure of the French Quarter were damaged during the storm and its aftermath. The French Quarter became a staging area for waves of responders following the storm. At times, the Quarter appeared to be a war zone with military troops and vehicles patrolling its fragile, narrow streets. Instead of evoking images of fine dining, shopping for antiques and art or laissez les bon temps roulez (“Let the good times roll!”), after Katrina media articles and photos depicted the cornerstone of Louisiana’s tourism industry as a place of lawlessness and despair. The area’s tarnished, post-Katrina image negatively affected the amount of tourism, convention business and locals visiting the area, causing some restaurants and shops to permanently close their doors. The Louisiana Legislature created the French Quarter Management District in 2007 to revitalize the French Quarter and address the post-Katrina and systemic issues confronting the neighborhood.
As separate post-Katrina recovery initiatives, Mayor C. Ray Nagin, and the New Orleans hospitality and tourism industry, organized groups to create an economic recovery district for the French Quarter and its surrounding area. Senator Edwin R. Murray brought the two groups together. He subsequently authored the legislation that created the French Quarter Management District as a political subdivision of the state of Louisiana. The Louisiana Legislature also appropriated $50,000.00 to the District for its first year, 2007-2008.
On January 28, 2008, the Board of Commissioners of the French Quarter Management District held its first meeting.
Last updated in 2015.