NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Local realtors say developers now are showing more interest in the Ninth Ward because it’s become less expensive than the Bywater and Maringy Neighborhoods.
“Yeah, the price is like really high. They've been skyrocketing for a while now,” said Realtor Samantha Andrus. “So actually, we don't see that changing. They're steadily going up."
Residents in those neighborhoods have also taken notice. "There's a lot of activity that has a lot of residents concerned because of the concentration of development in the same area,” said John Guarnieri, Bywater Neighborhood Association President.
Some people who live in the Bywater tell Guarnieri they’re worried about three projects: a proposed hotel, development of the old Navy vase, and a mixed-use property by the Housing Authority-New Orleans.
A spokesperson with Councilmember Kristin Palmer’s office say these projects are still going through the approval process.
"It brings more traffic, more people in the neighborhood, obviously we have concerns with safety, the infrastructure," said Guarnier.
These proposed projects, along with real estate prices are why investors like Otis Simmons say they’re no longer looking to build in the Bywater.
"It's a wish list if you can get back there,” said Simmons. “But it's hard now. It's thinned out."
The lack of available property has realtor Kim Thomas pointing people like Simmons into the Ninth Ward or what she’s dubbed, the “Bywater Extension.”
“I call it the Bywater extension because the area that’s closest to the St. Claude Claiborne area there’s not a whole lot of property there left for investors and people looking to buy," said Thomas.