is the first suburb of New Orleans, Louisiana, located on the south shore
of Lake Pontchartrain between the cities of New Orleans and Kenner.
Metairie and New Orleans were both created by alluvial deposits of the
Mississippi River system over thousands of years. Metairie is
physically separated from New Orleans by the 17th Street Drainage Canal.
Like New Orleans, Metairie is located below sea level and has large annual
Gras celebrations. The world's longest bridge, the twin span, 24-mile long
Causeway connects Metairie to the north shore of Lake Pontchartrain,
where many of Metairie and New Orleans' former residents have moved.
Thousands of commuters take the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway to work daily
and most of Metairie's newer office buildings have been constructed on or
near Causeway Boulevard. Metairie is positioned 29.99
degrees north of the equator and 90.17 degrees west of the prime meridian.
Metairie is not a city and has no mayor or local
government of its own. As part of Jefferson
Parish, Metairie is governed by the Jefferson Parish Council.
Metairie Ridge was once incorporated as a city for approximately 17
years in order to allow the area to obtain gas service. In 1927 its
one and only Mayor, C.P. Aicklen, arranged for gas service to Metairie.
However, less than 18 months later, Metairie Ridge was unincorporated and
Metairie has existed as an unincorporated area (with gas service) ever
since. Over 67,000 friendly families or approximately 160,000
people live in Metairie's five zip codes (70001, 70002, 70003, 70005 and
70006). Jefferson Parish has many cities, including the Cities of Kenner,
Gretna, and Grand Isle. Metairie, the hart of
Jefferson Parish, forms a part of the Greater New Orleans metropolitan
area and is technically an unincorporated part of Jefferson Parish,
Louisiana. Metairie residents have no mayor and no City taxes.
Unlike the other 49 states, Louisiana, due to its French heritage, has
parishes rather than counties.
of the name "METAIRIE"
Some explanations of the meaning of the word "Metairie" simply
state that Metairie comes from the French word for farm. Actually, the
term Metairie is derived from the French word "Moitie"
(one-half), and the French term "moitoire" (used in the
12th century feudal days of Europe to describe a particular type of French
farming relationship where a landowner would lease a portion of property
to a farmer for 50% of the crops or produce grown by the tenant and no
money as rent). Over 200 years ago Louisiana's French heritage
established the practice of describing certain farms located on the land
created by alluvial deposits of old Metairie Bayou near New Orleans as
"Metairie". Over the past few hundred years, the word Metairie
has had different spelling variations including "Maiterie",
"Meteria" and Maitery". Many years ago, one
particular farm owned by the Chain brothers near Bayou Choupic was known
as La Metairie. The road which ran along side of Bayou Choupic was
commonly referred to as Metairie Road. Over time, the development of this
area greatly expanded and the entire expanded area is now known as
Metairie. Metairie Road is still one of the main, traditional (slow-2way
traffic) arteries which connects Metairie to the City of New Orleans.
the area surrounding Metairie Road is known as "Old Metairie".
Various shops, professional buildings, and shopping centers have developed
on Metairie Road, which is one of the most picturesque areas of Metairie.
Lakeside Shopping Center, one of Louisiana's oldest and largest shopping
malls, is located on Causeway Boulevard in the heart of Metairie.
Metairie's historical residential base is gradually shifting from a
primarily suburban residential community, to various mixed commercial uses
including retail malls, shopping centers, office buildings, night clubs
and entertainment. Many of Metairie's night clubs are located in "Fat
City", which was planned and developed as Metairie's commercial
district. The New Orleans Saints offices and practice fields are in
Metairie. The New Orleans Zephyrs AAA baseball team maintains its
stadium in Metairie. Lexis of New Orleans is in Metairie. Mercedes
Benz of New Orleans is located in Metairie. Metairie is similar to New
Orleans in many ways, but it is not located in Orleans Parish and it is
locally governed by the Council of the Parish of Jefferson, not by any
city council or police jury.
The City of Kenner, Louisiana's third largest city and home of the New
Orleans International Airport establishes the western boundary of
Metairie. The City of New Orleans establishes the eastern boundary of
Metairie. Metairie businesses often use the name "New
Orleans" as part of their name. Businesses and people
from Metairie often describe themselves as being from New Orleans.
Visitors to the City of New Orleans travel through Metairie on Interstate
10 or Veterans Memorial Boulevard, which has become Metairie's longest and
primary commercial boulevard, extending from New Orleans to and through
the City of Kenner. Lakeside Shopping Mall, Clearview Shopping Center, and
many other malls, shopping centers, restaurants and other commercial
businesses are located on Veterans Boulevard.