French Market – New Orleans LA

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The Public Works Administration (PWA) provided the funds for the restoration and expansion of the historic French market along the waterfront of the Vieux Carré of New Orleans.  Short and Brown’s 1939 compilation of important PWA projects has the following to say:

“Along the Mississippi River water front in New Orleans is located a group of buildings comprising the old French market, which is one of the largest public markets in the United States. One of the buildings was erected during the Spanish domination in the eighteenth century, and it has been an object of interest to tourists for the past 100 years.

This project consisted of three main parts, the first being alterations and additions to the existing meat market, the second consisting of the erection of a unit containing fruit, vegetable, and poultry markets, and a restaurant, and the third, a group of three buildings including the famous stall market and a coffee shop. The project was completed in January 1938 at a construction cost of $287,716 and a project cost of $323,750.”

There are no plaques acknowledging the work of the PWA on the buildings, only the subsequent restorations done by the city in 1973 and 1993.

We are not sure about the labeling of the photographs, given the several buildings that compose the French Market today.  Any corrections appreciated.

Project Details

Federal Cost Local Cost Total Cost Project #'s

Source notes

C.W. Short and R. Stanley-Brown. Public Buildings: A Survey of Architecture of Projects Constructed by Federal and Other Governmental Bodies Between the Years 1933 and 1939 with the Assistance of the Public Works Administration (Washington DC, 1939) (alas, Wikipedia gets it wrong and attributes the restoration to the WPA instead of the PWA)

Project originally submitted by Shaina Potts on December 11, 2011.
Additional contributions by Richard Walker.

We welcome contributions of additional information on any New Deal project site.


Location Info

700-1010 Decatur Street
New Orleans, LA 70116

Location notes:

Coordinates: 29.9593229, -90.06038699999999

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