Former Bohn Motor Co. Building Becomes New Odyssey House Louisiana

NEW ORLEANS — What was once a vacant building at 2700 S. Broad is now a state of the art healthcare facility focused on addiction treatment.

Yesterday, Governor John Bel Edwards joined Mayor Latoya Cantrell, Councilman Jay H. Banks, Secretary of the Louisiana Dept. of Health Dr. Rebekah Gee, community members, and project partners for the ribbon cutting of the Odyssey House Louisiana’s (OHL) new site — the former Bohn Motor Co. building. The $17.4 million renovation project historically restored and expanded the structure, rendering 37,000 square feet for OHL and 4,000 square feet of retail space.

 

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The Bohn Motor Co. building before its renovation. (Claire Bangser, Roots and Wings Creative)

 

According to a press release, the new site will help to double OHL’s capacity to provide access to behavioral health and substance abuse treatment, critical in the face of the nation’s growing opioid epidemic. The organization will create 45 new jobs and provide low-cost medical and behavioral healthcare to thousands of New Orleans residents at the new site.

“Odyssey House Louisiana is the largest addiction treatment provider in the state of Louisiana, and it is about to double in size, which is critically important with the opioid epidemic and the associated problems it causes in our communities,” said Odyssey House Louisiana executive director Ed Carlson.

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The project was made possible by a partnership between Gulf Coast Housing Partnership (GCHP) and Rhodes Commercial Development.  Rhodes Commercial Development is a third-generation family business deeply rooted in the Broadmoor and greater New Orleans community. The Rhodes purchased the building just before Hurricane Katrina in 2005.  Subsequent challenges delayed progress on the building for 12 years.  GCHP is a mission-driven real estate developer with finance and community development expertise; previous New Orleans developments include Café Reconcile, The Muses Apartments, and the New Orleans Mission.

 

The side of the Odyssey House Louisiana’s (OHL) (Claire Bangser, Roots and Wings Creative)

 

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“To meet the needs of people exactly where they are, we need a wholistic approach,” said Mayor Cantrell. “Odyssey House being right here in the heart of Central City and in the Broadmoor Community is a part of that.”

The Bohn Motor Co. building is listed on the national register of historic places and was originally designed by renowned New Orleans architect, Emile Weil — who also designed the Saenger Theater and the Dixie Brewery in New Orleans. Construction met federal historic preservation rehabilitation standards.

 

Governor John Bel Edwards joined Mayor Latoya Cantrell, Councilman Jay H. Banks, Secretary of the Louisiana Dept. of Health Dr. Rebekah Gee, community members, and project partners for the ribbon cutting of the Odyssey House Louisiana’s (OHL) new site.

 

The project received New Market Tax Credits allocations through Enterprise Community Investment and Goldman Sachs Urban Investment Group. Financing was provided by the Louisiana Office of Community Development, the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority, the Reinvestment Fund, with a New Market Tax Credit equity investment from Goldman Sachs Urban Investment Group and historic tax credit equity investments from Twain Financial Partners.

“I am thankful for this new facility and for all of the people who are going to be able to have help to find help within these walls,” said Governor Edwards. “One of the things we did that makes treatment available for many more people is the Medicaid expansion – an executive order that I signed on my first day. Today more than 455,000 working people have health insurance because of expansion and there is a behavioral health component to that coverage. As of today, over 36,000 Louisianans have been able to receive either inpatient or outpatient treatment for substance abuse issues.”

 

 

 

 

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