Construction of TUPD substation on Broadway moves forward

Sammy Lever, Contributing Reporter

The Tulane University Police Department is building a new substation on the corner of Broadway and Zimpel with plans to be finished by the 2023 fall semester. (Will Embree)

The Tulane University Police Department’s new Uptown substation is currently on track to be completed prior to the fall 2023 semester. The new substation, which will be located on the corner of Broadway and Zimpel street, is near popular student hangouts, The Boot Bar and Grill and Mushroom New Orleans. Despite the concerns of some students, construction has progressed steadily since ground was broken in summer of 2021. 

Prior to construction, a trailer was located on the site where the now torn-down Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity house once stood. TUPD believes that the substation will have a significant positive impact on the crime rate of the university. 

This location was chosen for the substation because of the high amount of Tulane traffic in this area, TUPD said. 

“[TUPD recognizes] that a large number of our community members either live or travel along the Broadway corridor and the move to that area will allow us to operate more consistently in that location,” Chief of Police Kirk M. Bouyelas said when asked about the selection of this spot. The substation will allow for quick access to many upperclassmen who live in the area and TUPD is hopeful it will quicken the time for emergency response. 

Bouyelas said he also anticipates that the “increased police presence in the area will provide for greater visibility and ultimately a safer environment.” 

While this new building is expected to lead to a larger police presence, no attention will be taken away from current on-campus operations. “We will not be abandoning our Diboll location, which will allow us to maintain a presence on campus, in addition to the new substation,” Bouyelas said. 

Many students are ready to embrace an increase in police presence as crime rises in New Orleans. Others are opposed to this change due to the perceived threat that it could affect student life for both on- and off-campus residents. Christopher Hummel, owner of the Mushroom, said he is not worried about the station impacting business. 

“I’m fine with it. I mean, there’s always a pretty significant TUPD and NOPD presence around here anyway,” Hummel told The Hullabaloo in February of 2021. “I like that it keeps anyone who’s potentially going to be a problem, maybe not hanging out. There has been a history of people who are not necessarily students coming to mix into the crowd and just starting stuff.”

The construction of the building was affected by the COVID-19 pandemic but was able to return to its predicted timeline, Bouyelas said. A student art installation protest and other concerns did not have an impact on the plans for the building and did not cause a delay.

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