Jun 4, 2024 - Development

5 priorities for New Orleans this year ahead of hosting Super Bowl

Photo shows Michael Hecht standing behind a podium and pointing to a screen showing before and after pictures of a beautified park area.

Michael Hecht on Tuesday outlined some of the priorities to get the city ready to host the Super Bowl. The event was on the stage at the Saenger. Photo: Carlie Kollath Wells/Axios

New Orleans leaders are calling this the "summer of Super Bowl" as they ramp up preparation efforts to host the big game in February 2025 at the Caesars Superdome.

Why it matters: Tourism officials estimate the Super Bowl will mean at least $500 million in economic impact to Louisiana.

The big picture: Gov. Jeff Landry and other state and local leaders on Tuesday said they plan to use the Super Bowl as the driving force to spur long-term, lasting change in the city.

  • Landry's priorities include road repairs, public safety improvements and business recruitment.
  • He told the audience at a press conference at the Saenger that he wants to use the Super Bowl as a test to see how the state can cut through the red tape of the procurement process.

Driving the news: Landry tapped GNO Inc. president and CEO Michael Hecht to be the liaison between the state and the city for economic and infrastructure efforts related to the Super Bowl.

  • Hecht and Mayor LaToya Cantrell said they will emphasize repairing roads, lights, drainage and sidewalks.
  • The goal is to have everything done by the end of December, Hecht told Axios New Orleans.
Image shows a rendering of the Crescent City Connection with multi-colored lights.
This is an artist rendering of the new lights on the Crescent City Connection. Image: Courtesy of DOTD

Here are five of the projects:

  • Add new lights on the Crescent City Connection.
  • Repave and repair Poydras Street.
  • Rehouse individuals living in encampments under the interstate.
  • Add murals in prominent spaces. Hecht mentioned two by artists bmike and Becky Fos that could go downtown.
  • Improve interstates by fixing broken lights, power-washing barrier walls and removing litter.

Other priorities include improving cell reception in the CBD and completing numerous neighborhood beautification projects.

By the numbers: The funding is coming from operating budgets, legislative directives and private fundraising, Hecht said.

Photo shows Gov. Jeff Landry hugging New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell while Gayle Benson looks on.
Gov. Jeff Landry greets New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell after Tuesday's event while Gayle Benson looks on. Photo: Carlie Kollath Wells/Axios

The intrigue: New Orleans' last Super Bowl in 2013 was marred by the embarrassing blackout.

  • It won't happen in 2025, said Marcus Brown, an EVP at Entergy and the chairman of the Super Bowl host committee.
  • They've added multiple redundancies and conducted several tests. Taylor Swift's three-night spectacular in October will serve as the final test run, he said.

What's next: New Orleans hosts Super Bowl LIX on Feb. 9.

  • The halftime performers are usually announced in the fall.
  • Tickets aren't on sale yet, but you can sign up for pre-sale packages and suites.

Editor's note: This story has been updated.

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