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Art Fail No More! NOCHI Closes on Former ArtWorks Building

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It's official! The $6.2 million sale of the former Louisiana ArtWorks Building, a 93,000-square-foot art complex that never came to be, is a done deal. The New Orleans Culinary and Hospitality Institute, the big winners chosen to take over the vacant Lee Circle-area spot, made the payment to the city of New Orleans yesterday and according to The Lens, hope to get things cooking by January 2016. Not to harp on the artfail aspect too much, but about $18 million of taxpayer dollar bills went into the ArtWorks structure and the city was left owing $6.8 million in loans to the Department of Housing and Urban Development. In brighter news, NOCHI, backed by several local celeb restaurateurs (Dickie Brennan, Ti Martin, John Besh) will bring Delgado Community College's culinary program to this CBD location, plus add on a four-year culinary degree from the University of New Orleans and an executive chef master's program through Tulane University. The makeover, which includes clearing out all of the art-making equipment and transforming the studios and gallery space, will cost around $9 million.
· ArtWorks building sale complete; culinary institute hopes to open in 2016 [The Lens]
· ArtWorks Building archives [Curbed NOLA]