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Sunday, April 30, 2017

PLUSURBIA DESIGN HONORED WITH

NATIONAL PLANNING ACHIEVEMENT AWARD


MIAMI – PlusUrbia Design, a boutique urban design and land use planning studio, has been honored with a national award presented by the American Planning Association (APA). PlusUrbia’s Wynwood Neighborhood Revitalization District (NRD) won the prestigious National Planning Achievement Award for Economic Development Planning.


“A small, independent film out of Miami won the Academy Award this year and now a boutique design studio in Miami has won the Oscars of Urban Planning” quipped Juan Mullerat, Director of Coconut Grove-based PlusUrbia.


The City of Miami partnered with PlusUrbia and Akerman law firm to develop a plan to transform Wynwood into a progressive arts community with walkable streets, transit corridors and green space. The Wynwood Business Improvement District hired PlusUrbia to create guidelines, incentives and zoning changes that became the NRD.


The plan spurred more residential development, particularly small, affordable apartments and live-work units that appeal to millennials.


“We’re proud to have engaged PlusUrbia to help create the Wynwood NRD, and congratulate them on this honor,” said Wynwood BID Planning & Zoning Chair David Polinsky. “The results of our collaboration are already shaping Wynwood’s continued evolution for the better.”


The 2017 National Planning Award recipients will be honored during APA's National Planning Conference in New York on May 8. The recipients of the profession’s highest honor will also be featured in the May 2017 issue of Planning magazine.


The Wynwood Neighborhood Revitalization District is one of 12 APA Achievement Award recipients this year. The award recognizes the economic development program to transform the previously blighted Wynwood into a diverse, 24-hour mixed-use arts and innovation neighborhood. Visit the Wynwood NRD project at:     

Each year, APA recognizes outstanding efforts in planning and planning leadership through its National Planning Excellence and Achievement Awards. The two-tier awards are selected through a juried process. Excellence recipients are the highest honor and Achievement Awards recognize areas of specialization with the planning profession.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

COZY BEDROOM IN OLD MIDCITY HOUSE -- PART 6



NEW ORLEANS AIR BNB

Final, final thought.

If you are allergic to cats -- do not book this place. 

Hat's off to JonGunnar's advertisement that makes it clear he has a cat and that his cat is clingy. 

If this bugs you, look elsewhere.

If you are a cat person like me, this will be the best thing -- other than location and price point -- about the house. 

Mooch is a beautiful black cat who lives indoors and out.

He does not meow.

Mooch has a kind of cackling growl for a voice. 

At first, I thought it meant he was going to claw me. 

But he's really just crying for attention in his unique way. 

Mooch also will cry to let you know he needs to go out to go to the bathroom. 

I adored Mooch.

He napped with me and I woke up with him sleeping on my back! 

He cuddled and slept next me. 

I fell in love with Mooch.

He's so affectionate and full of personality, I wanted to take him home.

So if you like quirky and cat-filled Airbnb experiences, you have found a home in New Orleans.

I'd go back in a heartbeat.




Friday, April 28, 2017

COZY BEDROOM IN OLD MIDCITY HOUSE -- PART 5


NEW ORLEANS AIR BNB

If you like funky, if you can look past clutter, this is a dream spot. 

Two final thoughts. (one will be about the beautiful male cat pictured above)

The biggest negative is the lack of lock on the door. 

There is a lock to the main door, but once you get in, there is no outside lock on your room door. 

That means when you leave, anybody can get in. 

Maybe JonGunnar only gets great guests and this is no issue. 

But even though I don't need chain hotel orderliness, I do want to be able to lock my room from the outside, when I'm gone for the day. 

Even from the inside, the "lock" is a little lever on the ground and I could never get it to line up with the metal piece.

I tossed and turned that first night, feeling like anyone could check in and open my door and walk in on me. 

Turned out I had to place to myself, so the main door lock kept all out -- but still, JonGunnar -- go to a hardware store and invest 50 bucks in a nice door handle lock.

That way, your guest can secure from the inside when sleeping and on the outside when leaving the room for the day and having the peace of mind that all is locked up safe.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

COZY BEDROOM IN OLD MIDCITY HOUSE -- PART 4



NEW ORLEANS AIR BNB

As all other reviewers have noted, this is a house with a lot of character. 

The downstairs is as cluttered as I've ever seen.

Not dirty, but cluttered. 

It's like an artist's warehouse imposed on an old family house's common area. 

JonGunnar is a photographer-artist and must travel a lot. 

I'm also guessing the artist's life does not provide a ton of extra money -- thus some tape fixing cracked windows and a lot of peeling paint and other flaws.

If you demand Marriott cookie cutter, this is not the place for you. 

If you want to live among art and feel like an edgy artist -- this is heaven. 

And the entire bill, booking fee, cleaning fee and nightly rent -- came to just over $200 for 5 days and 4 nights. 

Think about that. 

A noisy, cramped, 150 SF room in the quarter would cost way more than that for one night...with parking and taxes added on. 



Wednesday, April 26, 2017

COZY BEDROOM IN OLD MIDCITY HOUSE -- PART 3


NEW ORLEANS AIR BNB

The kitchen has a washer dryer and tons of washing machine soap -- so you can pack super light and wash clothes while using the tub-shower. 

The house is no wheelchair-accessible, but with the homes raised above the flood plain, very few NOLA houses are. 

It's a typical double shotgun with anti-room, living room and kitchen on the ground floor and bathroom and 3 bed rooms on the top floor. 

JonGunnar was traveling when I arrived and his other room was not booked, so I had the entire place to myself. 

Knowing how haunted New Orleans is, that made things a little creepy the first night, but it also meant now hearing others walking up the creaky old wooden stairs plus zero waits for the one bathroom. 

The bed was surprisingly comfortable for a house with mismatched, old furnishings. 

Sam, the person who helps out JonGunnar with making beds etc. when he's on the road -- followed my neurotic requests for extra sheet and towel, layered a certain way.

Both Sam and JonGunnar were available by text to answer all questions -- practical and fun -- before and during my stay.

The response was light speed.

Very impressive. 

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

COZY BEDROOM IN OLD MIDCITY HOUSE -- PART 2


NEW ORLEANS AIR BNB

The Banks Street Bar, which sometimes has food and often has music, also is super close. 

But somehow, amazingly, you don't hear the noise of the popular bar, even though it's open well past midnight. 

I'm a noise phobic person. I slept well at JonGunnar's place. 

The fact that each guest room has a wall-mounted air conditioner right over the bed probably helps, as it provides instant white noise to muffle the random dog bark or siren that one would hear in any urban location. 

There is a small off street parking space and always a free on street spot for your rental car within a block of the house at the corner of South Alexander and Palmyra.

Check in is easy.

He texts you the code to the lock box out front. 

There also are bikes that you can use, but I walked to close stuff and used the rental for other distances. 

Note: you do not need an expensive rental car. 

Transit and Uber will serve you well. I only had a car because I was photographing far flung places that were not served by Uber. 

Monday, April 24, 2017

COZY BEDROOM IN OLD MIDCITY HOUSE -- PART 1


NEW ORLEANS AIR BNB

Mid-City is where you want to be. 

Trust us.

It has great restaurants, neighborhood joints nestled in among real people, real houses, real culture.

It is not loud and drunk and overpriced like the French Quarter.

It is close to everything you'd ever want to see in New Orleans. 

JonGunnar's place is an Air BnB rental in the heart of everything.

It literally is within crawling distance of the Canal Street Streetcar, which will take you to the French Quarter, CBD, City Park, and some of the best cemeteries for touring in town. 

The old house also is super close to a cluster of great neighborhood food places -- the breakfast and lunch joints Wakin' Bakin' and Biscuits and Buns on Banks are a block away. 

Clesi's, which does crawfish boils and has a great jambalaya, is at this same junction as is Mid-City Pizza and its great outdoor space.