Plaza tower, New Orleans.
Plaza Tower (for a time dubbed Crescent City Towers and Crescent City Residences in a failed proposed redevelopment scheme) is a 45-story, 531-foot (162 m) skyscraper in New Orleans, Louisiana, designed in the modern style by Leonard R Spangenberg, Jr. & Associates. Located in the Central Business District (CBD), it is the third tallest building in both the city of New Orleans and the state of Louisiana.The building has been unused since 2002 because of environmental problems such as toxic mold and asbestos. In March 2005, the Plaza Tower was purchased by Giannasca Development Group LLC for $4 million. The Giannasca Group planned a $120 million renovation to convert the office tower into a 197-unit condominium tower with an entirely new facade. However, after damage due to Hurricane Katrina, the group was involved in faulty appropriations of insurance money that had been issued after the storm, causing the group to sue one another and default on the mortgage.In 2007, the building was auctioned off and purchased by Plainfield Asset Management for $583,000. In January 2009, mold remediation work began on the structure to rid it of asbestos and other problems. The work involves stripping the entire interior of the building, including removing all of its walls and ceilings. The work is estimated to cost $10 million and is expected to take one year to complete. Subsequent future plans are uncertain.As of Wednesday, July 20, 2011, WWL TV of New Orleans reports that the building is up for auction, with a minimum bid of $250,000.Construction of the Plaza Tower began in 1964, but halted in October 1966. The property was bought out and construction resumed in 1968. Upon completion later that year, the Plaza Tower became the tallest building in New Orleans and Louisiana, a record it held for four years when One Shell Square surpassed it by over 160 feet (49 m).Along with the World Trade Center on the Mississippi riverfront, the Plaza Tower marked the beginning of modern high-rises in New Orleans. The building has always held a prominent place in the city's skyline, even after the 1970s building boom on along Canal Street and the 1980s boom along Poydras Street. This is due to both its unique design, particularly its "mushroom top," and its location on the extreme edge of the CBD.The Plaza Tower was originally designed primarily as an office building with some residential space on the upper floors. Upon completion of the tower, very little residential space was made available. By 1984 the remaining residential apartments were made into offices.In 2001, tenants began to publicly criticize the building's owners for ignoring worsening conditions in the building. Claims were made that a lack of proper maintenance had led to exposure to asbestos and toxic mold. Several class action lawsuits were filed by workers against the owners and managers and their own employers, the Louisiana Department of Social Services and Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals. In 2002 approximately 700 Louisiana state and New Orleans District Attorney's Office employees relocated en masse to offices on Common Street. Since that time, the building has sat sealed off and unused.
Last updated:Mar 3, 2021
Plaza tower 800-898 Loyola Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70113, USA, New Orleans, United States Attraction
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