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FEMA Section 106 Notices for Louisiana
Comment on "Public Notice Regarding Section 106 Review of Orleans Parish School Board (OPSB) and the Louisiana Dept. of Education, through its Recovery School District (RSD) implementation of the School facilities Master Plan in Orleans Parish–Seeking Public Comment"
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Name: Carey Clouse
City: New Orleans, LA
Phillis Wheatley Elementary School, 2300 Dumaine St, New Orleans, LA
Comments: The demolition of Phillis Wheatley Elementary School would be a major loss for the City of New Orleans. This structure is an important neighborhood landmark and a nationally-recognized example of fine mid-century modern architecture. The retention and reconstruction of this school would help to preserve community and institutional memory in a flood-impacted neighborhood, protect valuable building materials and methods, and provide a more immediate, fiscally feasible plan for school redevelopment in the area.

The most important reason to preserve Phillis Wheatley Elementary, however, is because the current building design actually works. The structure addresses the neighborhood context, provides shaded outdoor space for students, and lifts classrooms above floodwater levels. A steel frame structure opens up classrooms to natural light, and the panels that comprise its walls readily allow for flexibility and adaptation. The compact scheme is well-suited to the hot and humid climate of the South, illustrating spatial efficiency and an elegant solution to security needs.

Please reconsider the reckless decision to demolish Phillis Wheatley Elementary School--- the students of the 7th Ward deserve to return to this useful and important landmark.