The Mississippi River, running from north to south, divides the United States into eastern and western halves. In southeast Louisiana, though, newcomers are frequently confused by the terms “East Bank” and “West Bank” since, due to the curves of the Mississippi River, what is called the “East Bank” is sometimes located geographically to the west of what is called the “West Bank” and vice versa. The banks also lie to the north and south of the river throughout most of the region. In southeast Louisiana, the term “East Bank” is often used to refer to any area that lies on the eastern half of the United States, as established by its location on the eastern bank of the Mississippi River, while the term “West Bank” is often used to refer to areas along the opposite side of the river. These terms are used in urban, suburban and rural parishes that are bisected by the Mississippi River, which include St. John the Baptist, St. Charles, Jefferson, Orleans and Plaquemines.
The Eastbank of Greater New Orleans includes all of Jefferson Parish (including the suburbs of Metairie, Kenner, River Ridge, Harahan, Elmwood, and Jefferson) that lies on the eastern bank of the river and most of Orleans Parish (including the majority of the city of New Orleans). Also, further down the Mississippi River are those suburbs of New Orleans that are located in St. Bernard Parish, which include Arabi, Chalmette, and Meraux (and, also, Violet and Poydras). All of St. Bernard Parish is located east of the river, extending from the eastern bank of the river back into the marshlands.