Bourbon St. construction lingers on as tourism season kicks off with Bayou Classic

NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - It is one of New Orleans' most notable tourist attractions, but with tens of thousands of people visiting for Bayou Classic this weekend, two blocks of the historic strip remain under construction for drainage repairs.

"A lot of people try to avoid the construction areas and it does affect business. Anybody with a good GPS will either go down Dauphine or Royal," resident Jay Melton said.

"It kind of takes away from the atmosphere of people dancing in the streets and stuff but it's a necessary evil so I understand," tourist Lauren Addie said.

Many tourists said they did not know the city was improving drainage along Bourbon St. It is the first project of its kind on Bourbon in a century.

Work from the 100 to 400 blocks started this spring and was initially supposed to be finished by the end of August. But city leaders say significant rain delays, unforeseen site conditions and budget issues pushed back the the completion date.

Crews have finished construction along the 300 and 100 blocks, but the 200 and 400 blocks remain under construction during the city's busy tourism season.

According to the city's roadwork website, work on the 200 and 400 block will be complete in December.

Many tourists said they appreciate the improvements even with the inconvenience.

"It's a needed change and also with a little bit of a makeover, it will make this city great again," tourist Kenneth Mills said.

The 500-800 blocks of Bourbon are scheduled for drainage repairs next year.

Copyright 2017 WVUE. All rights reserved.