One of the first steps in a $40 million public safety plan have appeared in the French Quarter of New Orleans.

Portable barriers have been installed with the purpose of blocking traffic when the mechanical wall is raised. According to NOLA.com the device is also meant to protect pedestrians from any possible terrorist attacks.

The 20-foot steel mechanisms stretch from curb to curb and are currently located on Bienville, St. Peter and Conti Streets.

Aaron Miller, the city's director of homeland security and preparedness, said the trio of barriers were put in place last week before the NBA All-Star game. Their angular walls will be raised into position each evening at 5 p.m. from Wednesday (Feb. 22) through Mardi Gras (Feb. 28) and during special events in the future. The walls will be lowered at 5 a.m. or earlier depending on crowds, Miller said.

The intention of the barriers are to ensure safety while still providing "access to bars, shops, hotels and parking" but so far the majority of the feedback hasn't been positive.

Facebook user Robby Robinson believes the barriers will have little to no effect.

If you live in New Orleans or are from here you understand and know one thing...this "fix" will do nothing to stop the ongoing crime in this city. This little "fix" is to make the visitors feel safe for the upcoming season FQF Jazz Fest etc. Please don't insult the people who live here with this dog and pony show. I love this city but if you live here you know you can't walk the street here at night and feel safe.

Gaetanino Pelletteri thinks the look of the barriers take away from the Quarter.

This is hideous and detracts from the historic beauty of the Quarter. Along with being pretty worthless, it just increases the paranoia and fear that the government uses to control us.

Kim Lawson understands the purpose, but still doesn't have much faith in the barricades.

I understand the need to be prepared before a crisis such as a terrorist attack. Everyone would be critical if something happens and there was no preparation. However, those are awful and I, too am wondering how long they will last. And the real issue at hand is the homegrown crime we have going on right now, and that should be the priority.

Check out Doug MacCash's full story at NOLA.com and give us your feedback on the French Quarter barriers.

[via NOLA.com]