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New driving vary deliberate at former Occasions-Picayune web site | businessnews

The location of the outdated Occasions-Picayune constructing at 3800 Howard Avenue has been purchased by two Louisiana businessmen who plan to revive a stalled golf-entertainment venture there with the intention of finishing it by early 2024.

The location was bought Tuesday by developer Joe Jaeger, who purchased it for $3.5 million together with his companions in 2016. He had a cope with Drive Shack to construct a golf-themed leisure advanced there till that firm bumped into monetary hassle through the COVID-19 pandemic.

The most recent sale worth was not disclosed.

The Broad Road overpass close to the Drive Shack, a golf leisure idea that was purported to be constructed on the former web site of The Occasions-Picayune in New Orleans. (Picture by Chris Granger | The Occasions-Picayune | The New Orleans Advocate)

Drive Shack had beforehand dedicated to a 20-year lease of the land from Jaeger’s firm. It had began building in 2019 on a $29 million high-tech “augmented-reality” driving vary, which was to have been the principle function of a three-story advanced that would come with eating places, bars, leisure lounges and a patio with arcade and garden video games.

With the pandemic sending its enterprise right into a tailspin, Drive Shack moved away from giant complexes to develop smaller “puttery” operations in a miniature-golf branding cope with golfer Rory McIlroy. The corporate negotiated a launch from its lease with Jaeger in August, recording a $2 million loss to get out of the deal.

The constructing had been deteriorating for the reason that newspaper, beneath its earlier proprietor, Advance Publications, began to relocate employees in 2012. The Occasions-Picayune was bought by Dathel and John Georges in 2019 and is presently headquartered within the Warehouse District.

After the Drive Shack growth stalled it once more fell into disrepair. The partially-built construction crumbled, weeds sprouted and piles of tires and different detritus have been dumped on the location.

New Orleans' Drive Shack at former Times-Picayune site gets City Council approval

Drive Shack bought approval in 2018 to construct a brand new $29 million golf leisure advanced on the web site of the outdated Occasions-Picayune constructing on Howard Avenue in New Orleans. Renderings confirmed plans for the advanced’s foyer, sport lounge, restaurant and bar, and a rooftop terrace. The advanced had been anticipated to open Nov. 2020. The brand new house owners, Nick and Alex Xiao, plan to revive the venture. (Courtesy Drive Shack Inc.)

Now, Alex Xaio, 38, mentioned he and his brother Nick, 43, who bought the location, are hoping to accumulate the unique plans from Drive Shack and proceed with the venture in the identical primary three-story format beginning in January.

They’ve partnered with Flite Golf & Leisure, which offers “turnkey” initiatives that emulate the identical technology-driven driving ranges as these developed by Drive Shack and Topgolf, which mix with different indoor leisure choices in addition to meals and bar providers.

See plans for the $29 million Drive Shack complex in New Orleans

Plans for the $29 million Drive Shack advanced in New Orleans included a sport lounge with extra conventional arcade video games, pictured within the rendering above. The Drive Shack idea combines a driving vary with an arcade expertise — 90 driving bays will face a protracted, netted vary outfitted with targets and know-how for monitoring the flight of golf balls hit.

“We’ll comply with the identical format, however we plan so as to add a little bit bit extra cool stuff to make it completely different,” Alex Xiao mentioned. This would come with, for instance, targets on the driving vary that might explode when hit by the golf ball from the third tier driving bays. The second-tier bays could have a extra conventional driving vary providing. The working identify for the venture is 504 Golf, they usually mentioned they count on to make use of about 100 initially when it opens.

The Xiao brothers emigrated as youngsters from Fuzhou province in mainland China with their household and began in enterprise in Louisiana 20 years in the past, backing dozens of small eating places earlier than transferring into property growth.

New jobs welcome

Extra not too long ago, they’ve began a small chain of trampoline-themed leisure venues beneath the Airborne Excessive model. At present, they’ve Airborne Excessive shops in Harvey, Denham Springs and Prairieville.

Jaeger mentioned that he and his companions are relieved to have bought the location and that the golf venture has a brand new champion.

“We could not be extra happy to have an all native staff full the golf leisure venture,” he mentioned. “With Drive Shack pulling out of the venture, the brand new native staff will fulfill a long-held imaginative and prescient of world class leisure on this particular web site, seen to all who enter the town on the interstate.”

Politicians welcomed the brand new possession and plans to get the venture transferring once more.

Mayor LaToya Cantrell additionally famous that that space of ​​Gert City has been badly in want of job-creating initiatives for years.

“This re-development venture is long-awaited and demonstrates our dedication to investing in financial growth whereas bringing blighted properties again into commerce,” she mentioned.

“This space has turn into a central web site for unlawful dumping,” she mentioned, including that “the town absolutely helps this new developer and is happy to pump life again into this web site.”

Lesli Harris, Councilmember for District B, by which the location is situated, mentioned: “The sale of this property is a superb step in the fitting route. I’m excited to have these native entrepreneurs in District B, bringing not solely a possibility for household leisure, but additionally creating properly over 100 jobs within the metropolis.”



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