Residents of the Esplanade Apartments voice frustrations after days of no electricity

Published: Jan. 26, 2023 at 8:37 PM CST
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - The Esplanade at City Park Apartment complex is a towering presence, but tenants say lately living there is trying their patience. Since Saturday (Jan. 21), they say they have had partial or total power outages.

Joyce Gregory lives in the multi-floor building.

“It’s just tough, it’s very tough,” she said.

So does Joseph Gay. His apartment is on the first floor.

“It’s cold, the food in my fridge is going bad and my dog’s real nervous. I understand on the upper floors it’s warm but first floor it’s unpleasant,” he said.

Holly Lawrence commented on the situation, too.

“Everybody seems to be passing the buck,” she said.

They say on Saturday electricity became unreliable and the situation worsened to the point that for the past two days power is completely off.

“Saturday evening it started, we were at 25%, came back on Sunday, Monday, they came they fixed it two o’clock; six o’clock it went 25% again,” said Gregory.

Eventually, they say they began getting emails from management about the problem.

“I personally got three emails from the management company that said that it was a transformer, there were three of them, they had to replace them, so for the past two nights we’ve had no power, at all, which means gates don’t work, stairwells don’t light up,” Lawrence stated.

With no way to cook, Gregory headed to buy food on foot.

“My husband’s homesick which isn’t good either, so what could I tell you, we’re not happy campers here right now. If it’s Entergy’s fault, is it the building’s fault? I think it’s the building’s fault, it’s going downhill, I’ve been here for eight years,” she said.

Still, she is not ready to move.

“You know what I would like to leave but there’s nothing else like this anywhere else in the city, it’s so convenient to everything, shopping, restaurants, the park, the streetcar, the rents are nice considering but got to grin and bear it right now,” said Gregory.

And they have concerns for elderly residents who live on upper floors and rely on elevators.

“Some people have to go ahead and just evacuate because it’s just not good, it’s not safe.”

A manager of the building told FOX 8 that she could not comment at the time.

But Entergy New Orleans issued the following statement:

“On Monday evening, Entergy New Orleans was made aware of power issues at the Esplanade at City Park apartments. We dispatched a crew, who determined that there was a fault on equipment that is the responsibility of the apartment complex. The faulty equipment impacted an Entergy New Orleans transformer, which our crews commenced work on Tuesday morning. We have tested all Entergy New Orleans equipment and it is fully functioning. At no point did Entergy New Orleans ask customers or the owners of the apartments to conserve power. We will continue to work closely with building maintenance to ensure power restoration is completed safely.”

Some residents said generators may be coming to the complex.

“The last I heard, and I believe this information came last night was that they were trying to get generators in but as far as what time, an ETA? I don’t have an ETA,” said Gay.

Lawrence said the situation is costing her money.

“You’re now coming up on the first of the month where people have to now come up with rent and pay rent for the next month but this situation I know I’m out of almost $400 between food and batteries and additional supplies. Nobody’s saying, how can we help the people who live here?” she said.

Lawrence is not ruling out moving from the city when she factors in the crime problem.

“Yeah, I’m thinking it may be time to get outside of New Orleans,” she said.

Gay says he will stay put.

“We just signed a new lease, so I’m sure we’ll be here. This is very frustrating but it’s at a one that I don’t know what else we can do, you know, going someplace else is a no-go, so for now it’s the waiting game,” said Gay.

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