About BCC
— Our Mission —
Broad Community Connections is a non-profit community development organization in New Orleans devoted to revitalizing Broad Street as a vibrant, equitable, and inclusive commercial corridor by promoting the health and economic, residential, and cultural development of its diverse surrounding neighborhoods.

Our work includes:

1

Co-developing $35M in high-impact community real estate development projects, including the ReFresh Project, a community health hub, and the Rose Collaborative, an arts & education campus.

2

Coordinating the Refresh Collaborative, a collective impact organization comprised of over 60 organizations and community members working together to address the root causes of health inequity in the Broad Street neighborhoods

3

Organizing and supporting over 120 small businesses along and near the Broad Street commercial corridor

4

Partnering with the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority through its Façade Renewal & Placemaking programs, garnering over $1M in Broad and Bayou Road small businesses and public space improvements

5

Leading various planning and land use efforts, including preserving historic commercial buildings, supporting residents to shape investment and development in their neighborhood, including New Orleans Citywide Commercial Corridor Revitalization Strategy

6

Launching Iconic Signage Project, an ongoing partnership with local artists and businesses which provides businesses and organizations with neon signs reminiscent of the corridor’s history

7

Producing a range of community events, including the Broad Flea, the Broad Street Brewhaha, the Bayou Road Community Bike Fest, and NOLA Drive-In and neighborhood movie nights.

8

Planting 100+ trees planted on Broad corridor and surrounding neighborhoods

Our Journey

In 2008, neighbors along Broad Street came together to start Broad Community Connections. 

Hurricane Katrina laid bare the city of New Orleans, and Broad Street was no exception. Inequitable recovery after Katrina compounded by years of disinvestment before it threatened Broad Street, but a group of community members imagined a different future. A future where Broad Street became a place where people from various racial, cultural, and socio-economic backgrounds could work together towards common goals: closing the 20-year racial life expectancy disparity, increasing economic development, creating a healthy, thriving corridor, and honoring its rich history and culture.

The founding board comprised of Lisa Amoss, Milton McWilliams Jr., Jim Kelly, Janet Davas, Bob Rivard, Keith Twitchell, Vera Warren-Williams, representing folks from MidCity, lower MidCity, Treme, Esplanade Ridge, the Seventh Ward, and Bayou St. John. 

In 2009, Broad Community Connections received Main Street Status from the State of Louisiana, making Broad Street one of the longest Main Street corridors in the country. With this designation, they brought in Karl Seidman, a professor at MIT and his class, including Jeff Schwartz, BCC’s founding director, to create a development strategy that centered on revitalizing the former Schwegmann's supermarket (now the ReFresh Project) and Bayou Road (the oldest place of culture and commerce in New Orleans)

By 2014, the Refresh Project, a community health hub, opened as an innovative national example of place-based public health in action. The range of tenants recognizes the holistic factors affecting health - education, social services, workforce development, food access - and fosters creative solutions to challenges felt by long-time and new residents.

Expanding on the hub, the ReFresh Collaborative, composed of over 60 community leaders, housing advocates, health education organizations, and convened by Liz Burpee, offers free health programming for kids and adults and advocates for policy changes that address the root causes of health disparities. Through a collective impact process, the Refresh Collaborative embedded an explicit commitment to racial equity and justice that grounds BCC’s work. 

Sustaining a grassroots-led approach to development, BCC uses deep relationship building and community participation to create intentional reinvestment along Broad Street.

As we enter 2021, Broad Community Connections welcomes Dasjon Jordan back to the organization as our new Executive Director.

In 2016, returning home to New Orleans after 11 years away, Dasjon worked with BCC to organize businesses on Broad Street and Bayou Road, revamping the Bayou Road Business Association to promote Bayou Road as a hub of culture, community, and commerce. As an organizer, planner, designer, and community member, Dasjon brings a deep commitment to this work and a collective vision for Broad Street’s future.