Squandered Heritage Vintage

Request for Demolition 208-10 N. Jefferson Davis Pkwy


Housing Conservation District Review Committee
Meeting Agenda
August 28, 2006
10 a.m., Room 7E07 City Hall

Property under review

Mid-City 208-10 N. Jefferson Davis Pkwy

Owner Hoa Nguyen Van has applied to demolish this Neo-Classical Revival shotgun double residence to be replaced with a new single family residence of no specific style or type. No redevelopment plan has been submitted.

208 210 N Jefferson Davis Parkway

208 210 N Jefferson Davis Parkway

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  • This website is going to be such a great resource! Great work, Karen.

  • debi


    This is great. I am a yankee (only been in N.O. 22 years) by birth but have had experience in other states, where local and state government allows for funding that goes to an organization such as the PRC…they in turn can enter into “contracts” with individuals who are willing to take the time to rejuvenate properties that would be considered historic in nature….ie. the Greek Revival above. The PRC would give the individual a “stipend” or VERY low cost loan, 2%, to rebuild the home or structure while maintianing a stipulated percentage of the original integrity and historic value. This is not to say they give the homeowner all the money, but a good financial kick start. There are guidlines and expectations that the home owner must adhere to, but they are all in regards to the integrity of the structure..there is a timeline set by the PRC (or organization equivalent to) which the applicant is expected to meet during the rebuilding process and it is also monitored to assure the applicant is abiding by the agreement. Then the house is definitely on the historic registry, and is recognized periodically for it’s rebuilding, integrity etc, through the PRC and other organizations…..pretty much win win, as long as the applicant meets the agreement. This kind of thing could sure help put a slow mo on the frantic, prefab, big box building mentality that is not the essence of New Orleans. Of course this all goes back to where the money is and where it’s going………..

  • no. no. no. no. no. no. no. no. no. no. no. no. no. no. no. no. no. no.

    See the great series in the Chicago Tribune, Squandered Heritage (you’ll have to register for access) about the problems from the Demolition Machine.

    Architecture, history, and urban design are _the_ key competitive advantages possessed by New Orleans even today.

    Each demolition is but one chink in your armor–not all that strong as of late–of competitive advantage.

  • alan


    You didn’t like the name of this web site. Could you please, give me an idea of what you might think is a better title. The language of renewal is important. I don’t want people pointing to a historic home in front of City Council and saying “It’s even listed on a web site called Blighed New Orleans”, and have that be a condemnation that needs to be addressed.

    Suggestsions for a name. I’m busy working on a mapping facility for this web site.

  • Hmmm… When Karen and I talked a few days ago she used the phrase “Blight & Misery” like an intersection of two streets. I thought it was catchy — still do — but Alan’s point is a good one. Perhaps the name should focus more on opportunities for preservation, rather than the negative aspect. Or maybe it should be broader, focused on properties that are simply marginal in some way. I thought maybe an idea would suggest itself as I typed, but no luck.

    “Blighted New Orleans” does have the advantage of being clear and direct, even if it is rather negative. But since Karen’s said she wants the site to also be about proposed demolitions and nuisance properties of all sorts, I do think a broader name might be suitable.

    We should probably encourage everyone posting about nuisance properties to also file a “Good Neighbor” report over at the City’s website. But now I’m rambling…

  • — Disinvesting New Orleans
    — Destroying New Orleans

    The trick is that NO has been seriously damaged. Which is not disinvestment at all.

    What matters is the response.

    Destroying heritage in the name of rebuilding the city is not a step forward, because it diminishes those qualities that the rest of us associate with New Orleans, and these are the verysame qualities that I presume that people like you and Karen care about or you wouldn’t be doing what you’re doing.

    WRT “blight” etc., I became very sensitized to it because of seeing how things played out in DC (and of course, reading about similar happenings elsewhere).

    This is a snippet of something I wrote about this broad issue:

    I’ll admit, the deplorable condition of the MLK Library had me falling into the same “blaming the building” trap that I frequently accuse others of suffering from…

    Buildings or neighborhoods called dilapidated, run-down, blight, eyesores, nuisances, decrepit, (etc.) are victims (and survivors) of disinvestment.

    The solution is not demolition, but investment instead of disinvestment. And maintenance and/or rehabilitation is the proper response to neglect or demolition-by-neglect.

  • Karen, this goes under my resources Links.

    This will go a long way towards something I wish to see here: a”brokerage” that would match buyers with demolishers in order to save priceless gems in our city. The city gains from this.

    Tres kewl!

  • alan


    You are publishing too fast. There are too many articles already. There is no place for discussion, and discusstion gets lost. You need to post one or two a day. You also need to give each of the postings some context.

    After you post a building, we can look around and see if the neighbors have any interest in the building. Then we can use this as a place for discussion.

  • alan


    What about “SquanderedHeritage.com” ?

  • That’s excellent.

    But if you don’t want to change the url you could keep blightedneworleans and add that to the title of the blog

    Blighted New Orleans
    Squandered (or Squandering) Heritage

    I was thinking about this last night, with not as good a turn of the word as Blair Kamin and Patrick Reardon, something like

    Blighted New Orleans
    New Orleans’ Opportunities

    This way you communicate both the problem and the opportunity.

  • Thanks for all the comments. I have been thinking a lot about ways to use this site to actually save a house. And my feelings about the site name are mixed. I know that Blight is a hot topic these days. People are calling into the City to complain about Blight issues. In our Neignborhood there is a fear that if we complain then we will unwittingly send a house to the Demo pile. Preservation has been been pitted against development and we are waging a war here.

    More comments more input?

  • alan

    I’ll change the URL as well. Look for it later today.

  • The problem I see with “Squandered Heritage” is that it might also miss the mark on the other side of the target. After all, do we not wish to also feature properties here that are truly nuisances, which should be demolished but are not?

  • Correct the nuisance but likely you don’t have to destroy the building in order to do so. What I call “blaming the building.” It’s a tough issue, I will admit.

    If buildings are beyond hope, according to a structural engineer, committed to historic preservation, well then, demolition is in order. Otherwise, “cure” the nuisance. Too often, the owner wants the place to be demolished to do whatever else, and fails to cure the nuisance deliberately.

    For testimony I’ve written on this broad issue (very long, but I won’t apologize) see: Blaming the building in Baltimore — when your tool is a gun, you think only about shooting

  • alan

    The name has been changed. I didn’t notice that the argument continued. I was of the mind that this was a participatory media project where people can discuss how to preserve the heritage of New Orleans. Not some impartial stream of photographs of buildings on their way to demolition.

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