What We Fund
Gallier Hall Art Restoration
The City of New Orleans will celebrate the 300th Anniversary of its founding in 2018. In celebration of the 1918 Bicentennial, the city undertook a full renovation of St. Louis Cathedral. In keeping with this tradition of large scale legacy projects at centennial milestones, Mayor Mitch Landrieu has proposed the full restoration and preservation of historic Gallier Hall in advance of 2018.
A forensic architectural analysis of the building indicated the need for $10 million in exterior renovations and $5 million for interior renovations. Of the $15 million budget, $10 million has been provided by the city through capital outlay for the exterior renovation already underway. In October of 2016, 2018 NOLA Foundation announced the launch of a $5 million dollar private fundraising campaign for the interior renovations led by a gift from The Helis Foundation.
The full interior preservation includes the restoration of 41 historic paintings and frames funded by The Helis Foundation, 33 chandeliers, and 60 windows located in 12 grand ballrooms. The period furnishings used during the building’s life as City Hall, long kept in storage, will be restored and returned to their rightful place throughout the building. The restoration will also include millwork repair, painting, re-wiring, floor refinishing, the restoration of two antique Steinway pianos, refurbishing the Ty Tracy Theater and installing a state of the art audio/visual system.
Gallier Hall is one of the most important structures built during the antebellum period of the city. Erected between 1845 and 1853, it served as City Hall for just over a century. Designed by James Gallier, Sr., who also designed the Pontalba Apartments that flank Jackson Square, the building has been the site of countless important events in New Orleans history and has continued its traditional place of honor during Mardi Gras, with the mayor toasting parading carnival royalty from the front steps.