Happening Today: Landrieu touts bustling local economy - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports, Social

Happening Today: Landrieu touts bustling local economy

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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) -

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu says New Orleans is bustling economically.

He says the city has shown growth over the last year.

From a dropping unemployment rate to rising home prices Landrieu is praising 2016 as a year of growth and improvement for the city.

Landrieu said in press conference on Magazine Street that more people are working in New Orleans, citing an unemployment rate drop from 6.7 to 5.8 percent.

He also says jobs are coming to the city, especially in the medical sector.

The opening of the Cobalt Medical Center and the new Veterans Administration Hospital will drive that growth.

In the spring Cobalt Rehabilitation opened bringing 180 health care-related jobs to Mid-City.

In a large ceremony that saw Veterans Affairs personnel and state and local leaders marking the occasion, the VA replaced its 50-year-old hospital with a state of the art complex.

The new VA hospital is expected to serve 70,000 veterans in the Gulf Coast region and 500,000 outpatients each year.

It officially opened on December 5.

Home prices, Landrieu said, are seeing their highest growth rate in five decades, increasing 14 percent in 2016.

Landrieu said tech jobs are also coming to the city citing smartasset.com ranking New Orleans second for tech employment growth.

The national unemployment rate stands at 4.6 percent. New Orleans’ unemployment rate stands at 5.8, still lower than Louisiana's rate of 6.2 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Landrieu says employers are coming to the city with industries like tech and medical bringing or expanding operations in New Orleans.

The sluggish oil and gas industry has been a drag on the overall unemployment rate.

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