This project has been in the works for a while now. The site of the former Times-Picayune at 3800 Howard Avenue has been purchased by a couple of Louisiana businessmen who want to revisit the idea of turning the site into a golf-entertainment project. The project is slated to be up and running by early 2024.
In 2016 the site was sold to a developer named Joe Jaeger who purchased it for $3.5 million and was set on turning the property into a Drive Shack. COVID-19 hit and the company that owned the franchise, Driveshack, fell into financial trouble. The company agreed to a 20-year lease with the developer so he began construction in 2019 only for them to back out of the deal. Since then, the building has sat vacant and crumbling. The site soon became a dumping ground for tires and other waste.
The site is now owned by brothers Alex and Nick Xaio who want to finish the golf-entertainment venue. In fact, they are in the works of trying to purchase the plans from Driveshack. They have now partnered with Flite Golf & Entertainment to complete the project. The venue will be very much like a Topgolf which combines golf with indoor entertainment along with food and bar services.
“We’ll follow the same format, but we plan to add a little bit more cool stuff to make it different,” says Alex Xiao. There will be targets on the driving range that will explode when hit from the third tier, and there will be more traditional range on the second tier. The project will be called 504 Golf and will employ around one hundred.
“The sale of this property is a great step in the right direction. I am excited to have these local entrepreneurs in District B, bringing not only an opportunity for family entertainment but also creating well over 100 jobs in the city,” praises Lesli Harris, Councilmember for District B.