Some downtown construction nears completion

Friday, June 1, 2012 - 7:56pm

With maps in hand, about two dozen people were taken on a guided tour of the many construction projects downtown Baton Rouge. Friday's tour guide was the Downtown Development District.

"Everything from new residential developments, to restaurants," said Davis Rhorer, executive director of the DDD.

Over $25 million worth of private money is being invested downtown. Some into old historic structures, like the Tessier Building said to be the oldest building in Baton Rouge, dating back to the early 19th century.

"We did our best to keep all the historic preservation in place," said David Weinstein, who's group Weinstein/Nelson Developers, is renovating the building.

The Tessier is being renovated to include three residential units that were leased out as soon as they were put on the market. Weinstein plans to break groud on an additional building in the back, offering the only riverfront residential views in the downtown area.

"Our intention in July is to start a four story residential condo complex," Weinstein said.

But for those tired of dodging construction equipment and sick of seeing cranes dot the downtown skyline like trees, the tour guide assures you, it'll all be worth it in the end. With Baton Rouge being the capitol city, drawing people from all over the world looking to do business in the state.

"It's a reflection of the community and who we are as a people," Rhorer said. "A lot of diversity is happening downtown."

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