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FEMA Section 106 Notices for Louisiana
Comment on "Public Notice Regarding Section 106 Review of State of Louisiana, LA Dept of Education/Recovery School District (RSD) Proposal to Demolish and Replace the Phillis Wheatley Elementary School, 2300 Dumaine St, New Orleans, LA - Seeking Public Comment"
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Name: Name redacted at the request of the author
City: Los Angeles, CA
Wheatley School
Comments: This is one of my favorite buildings in New Orleans. Walking through the neighborhood and seeing it the first time was like a dream, but more of an apocalyptic dream because of the sad state of neglect it had fallen in to. Katrina is not an excuse for the terrible condition of the school, its built up off the ground and would not have received any flood damage. These are the kind of buildings a city with hurricanes needs, floating up above the land with the trees. A genuine rehabilitation would create an inspiring and beautiful school that any student would be lucky to attend. People are confusing the state of disrepair it is in with an ugly building. This is exactly what happened with nineteenth century buildings, people thought they were ugly and old fashioned at the 50 year mark and demolished them until the city had a body to govern its preservation efforts. The Wheatley School can be beautiful again, and serves as a testament to a brilliant architectural solution to a common building type. Don't erase the authentic fabric of the city only to build some creepy disnelyand idea of "New Orleans architecture" in its place. The buildings of the French Quarter grew to be shabby, a safety hazard, and eyesores, but the determinative restoration efforts the city applied towards that area has made it a world renowned destination, instead of letting plans in the 50s move forward (which included demolishing blocks and blocks of the Quarter so that highway might be built in its place in the name of "progress"). Progress would not be demolishing this school and replacing it with the typical lame stucco buildings you see in the suburbs.