Pontchartrain Beach in New Orleans May Be Making a Comeback
Pontchartrain Beach, a once-forgotten New Orleans hotspot, may be making a triumphant return.
On Tuesday, the Pontchartrain Beach Foundation held a meeting to review plans for a newly designed recreational area for the site.
If those plans come to fruition, the beachfront would be restored, along with separate waterfront coves for motorized and non-motorized boats, a renovated fishing pier, a beach volleyball area, a dog park, and areas for food trucks and other amenities.
“New Orleanians need and deserve a world-class beach. Bringing back Pontchartrain Beach will serve as a huge quality of life amenity for our residents and as a catalyst for jobs and economic development opportunities,” PBF board of directors member Zach Kupperman said.
If awarded the lease, the PBF says it hopes to open the beach to the public within four years.
The next meeting will be held in about a week and will consist of the board voting on whether or not to approve the lease.
The History of Pontchartrain Beach
Pontchartrain Beach was an amusement park in New Orleans on the south shore of Lake Pontchartrain. It opened on June 30, 1928 and closed on September 23, 1983.
It included a beach with a large bathhouse and swimming pools, amusement rides, mini golf and concession stands. The park also featured live music concerts, including many local musicians and touring national acts such as Elvis Presley.
Pontchartrain Beach was sold in 1983. The main reason it closed down was due to declining attendance.
Pontchartrain Beach Today
Several of the rides from the amusement park ended up at other parks across the south. The hand-painted carousel horses were donated to New Orleans' City Park.
The land formerly housing the park is now occupied by the University of New Orleans Research & Technology Park, home to numerous corporate tenants, the Navy's Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center, and the UNO Advanced Technology office building.