While trails bring many benefits to the neighborhoods they traverse, they do not act in isolation. Neighborhood revitalization requires allied groups working on a variety of different projects. RTC partner Friends of Lafitte Corridor (FOLC) understands this connection. It recently issued two letters of support for redevelopment projects adjacent to the Lafitte Corridor, a three-mile project rail-trail through the Mid-City, Treme and Lafitte neighborhoods of New Orleans.
Local nonprofit St. Margaret's is looking to convert the former Mercy Hospital site into a senior living facility; FOLC notes in its letter of support that "the addition of senior living facilities in this site will add value to the corridor and provide opportunities to serve constituents that are sometimes left out of public open space and recreation projects." The other project receiving a letter of support from FOLC is a proposal from Broad Community Connections to redevelop an abandoned supermarket near the corridor as a grocery, urban farm and commercial food service kitchen.
The impact of a trail - and of a trail group - extends beyond the borders of the trail corridor. FOLC's letters of support set an example for trail groups across the country: when the goals of related projects align with those of a trail project, it's worthwhile to work together and support each other's efforts.
In other news, Friends of Lafitte Corridor is having a fundraiser this Sunday. If you are in New Orleans, sign up and support this great organization.