New Orleans redeveloper opens apartments in Treme

by Deon Roberts Online Editor
The New Orleans City Business

The Treme neighborhood has a new, four-unit apartment complex.

Josh Bruno, president of New Orleans-based Downtown Development Group, today said the project – a $95,000 renovation of a house at 1917 St. Ann St. – opened this week. Three of the units were rented today, he said.

The apartments range in rent from $690 for a one-bedroom, 750-square-foot unit to $800 for a two-bedroom, 1,000-square-foot unit, he said.

Bruno said when he bought the house about two months ago for $25,000 it was being used as rental property. He estimates the house, which had roof damage because of Hurricane Katrina, is 70 years old.

Bruno said it is the eighth project he’s done in Treme.

It is next to another project of his, St. Ann Square Apartments, a 44-unit development that opened about two months ago. Bruno said it is about 65 percent occupied, with the one- and two-bedroom units rented. Only studio apartments remain available for rent.

A week ago, Bruno opened a Soap-N-Suds laundromat on the first floor of St. Ann Square Apartments. Bruno said he has also opened three Soap-N-Suds in the Miami area.

He said he is interested in buying at least two more nearly buildings in Treme.

Bruno hopes to convince other businesses that the area is safe to invest in. Many people are living in Treme, but there aren’t enough grocery stores or places at which to shop, he said.