More than two years after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita passed through the Gulf Coast, one of New Orleans major suburban malls, General Growth Properties' Oakwood Center in Gretna, La., is now open again.
The mall has more than 50 retail and restaurant outlets, and most are open, though construction is still underway in some stores, including Old Navy.
Employees at stores that have reopened are grateful to be back. Gretna resident Tammy Judy has been a Bakers shoe store employee for more than 20 years. All those years were spent at Oakwood, until Katrina forced her to move to a Bakers store in Metairie.
"I can't say enough how happy I am to be back," she said, smiling as she greeted customers at the entrance of the refurbished store.