Nola.com reports that City Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell is drafting legislation that would put a 1-cent sales tax on products sold at the Riverwalk Mall, apparently with support from the mall owners. The money raised would go towards supporting public infrastructure repairs in the area for things like pipes, streets, and sidewalks.
The articles reports that this would be a component of a much larger effort to clean up and develop the riverfront into a premier tourist attraction.
The proposal seems to be similar to sales tax legislation that the city gave Stirling Properties for the Magnolia Marketplace development. In that case, the money generated from the 1-cent tax would be used to support bonds to pay for public infrastructure improvements and other “extraordinary” construction costs that make New Orleans a more expensive place to build, developers have said.
The Magnolia Economic Development District, bounded by South Claiborne and Washington avenues and Clara and Toledano streets, was created specifically for the $25 million Magnolia Marketplace. The 98,000-square-foot strip mall will include six national retailers — TJ Maxx, Ross, Michael’s, PetSmart, Shoe Carnival, Ulta cosmetics — and a Raising Cane’s restaurant. A separate phase of development includes construction of a Capital One bank branch, a T-Mobile retail store and another retail store one block over.