Everything in New Orleans is funky – everything but the air.

Buck Sardi, co-owner of Ponchartrain Air Conditioning, a 10 year old contractor, enjoys a project that presents a challenge, particularly when the project is new and there are lots of parts to the puzzle.

One of Sardi’s most recent challenges was to engineer and install climate control for City Lights, a chic new night spot in the heart of New Orleans’ revitalized warehouse district.

In a sense, City Lights was already a success, thanks to a sister club, Ditka’s City Lights, i downtown Chicago. Given New Orleans’ burgeoning visitor trade and a proven formula, the owners believed the club had excellent potential and were very specific about what they wanted.

A top priority was a pleasing, humidity-balanced environment–a tall order for a club that sits four blocks from a river in a city known for its 90 F, 90 percent RH climate. The second requirement was for air that was free of odors and smoke.

The building that houses City Lights is a stately turn-of-the-century structure with brick