The Uptown Neighborhood of New Orleans
The grand mansions along St. Charles Avenue drowsing beneath ancient, stately oaks. The energetic bustle of Magazine Street. The historic, manicured campuses of Tulane and Loyola Universities. The cool shade of Audubon Park. The raised Creole cottages and restrained Greek Revival houses and gabled Tudors and Carpenter’s Gothic fantasies that line streets named Jefferson and Napoleon and Austerlitz and Amelia. And did we mention the zoo? And the golf course? Uptown New Orleans is the epitome of the gracious, gentle beauty that’s defined New Orleans for many generations.
If you’re looking for a family-friendly Mardi Gras experience, consider visiting the Uptown parade route. Ladders full of happy children stretch for miles along the parade route while families set up shop along the streetcar route in a tailgate-style fashion. Often times homes closest to the St. Charles and Napoleon parade route experience significantly higher values than those more distant.
The very broadest definition of “Uptown,” if derived from the historic definition including everything upriver from Canal Street, would encompass about one-third of the city. In its narrowest usage as a New Orleans City Planning neighborhood, “Uptown” refers to an area of only some dozen blocks centering on the intersection of Jefferson and St. Charles Avenues. Neither of these is what most New Orleanians of recent generations usually mean by “Uptown”. While some may quibble about the exact boundaries, “Uptown” generally refers to the areas of the city closer to the river (the river side of S. Claiborne Avenue), upriver from the Pontchartrain Expressway, and nearer the modern CBD/Warehouse District neighborhood.
Uptown was built along the higher ground along an old natural river levee on a wide, gradual bend of the Mississippi. Streets were laid out either roughly following the River’s curve or perpendicular to it, resulting in what has been called a “wheel with spokes” street pattern (with the hub inland from Uptown, in the Broadmoor and Mid City areas).
Uptown has two distinct neighborhoods within its general boundaries:
- University area