Squandered Heritage Vintage

And Then There is This…

Sunday afternoon a friend and I rode around town looking at properties slated for Demolition. when we drove around a corner and saw this we both screamed. I am not kidding.

Mid City New orleans

Mid City New Orleans

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About Karen Gadbois

Karen Gadbois co-founded The Lens. She now covers New Orleans government issues and writes about land use. With television reporter Lee Zurik she exposed widespread misuse of city recovery funds and led to guilty pleas in federal court. Her work attracted some of journalism's highest honors, including a Peabody Award, an Alfred I. duPont-Columbia Award and a gold medal from Investigative Reporters and Editors. She can be reached at (504) 606-6013.

  • randall fox

    i love it. represents hcdrc’s failure yet again

  • Billy

    Where exactly IS this? And what are those flaps supposed to be? Like decorative? Or do they have some purported wind diversion properties?

  • I am not sure where to lay the blame. They are in Mid City..I will look up the exact Street. But beware when you see them in person your whole body shakes.

  • It’s the Home Depot doors that really make the facade. The little things count.

  • Deep

    Randal, this property is NOT within the jurisdiction of the HDLC and there is no entity at the city level that reviews design in Mid City.

  • I’M BLIND.

    Besides, I’m not sure this is building is of a pre-war design. Notice the piers. They are not brick which was typically used before the war. After the war CMU’s (concrete masonry units) were used because they were quicker and cheaper. More than likely it is a post-war raised cottaged. And totally expendable. Hpefully it will be.

  • Wow, I just drove past there after checking out the Preserve (Baumer Foods) site of a proposed apartment complex. (Everybody at the Mid-City meeting was telling me how bad the streets were back there, but except for the road alongside the Expressway (is that technicaly stille Tunlane?) I’d trade any of the other roads in and out of that site for No. St. Patrick.

    I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw that it’s on Alexander between Tulane and Banks).

    And then there is this: http://neworleans.metblogs.com/archives/2006/10/whats_wrong_wit.phtml#more

  • And (secretly) I like it in a “man, that is so Mid-City funky” sort of way. A block of them (or anything inspired by them) would be an abomination, but off on its own (and hat tip to Kinch for pointing out something I didn’t know about the piers) if it’s not a historically valuable property, at least its- now-ummm—interesting.

  • One of my neighbors said the facades look like Head Boards. I kind of like the “inspiration” idea..All it needs is some chrome..

  • That double is freakin’ butt-ugly. I want the architect’s name so I can warn Gentilly residents about his sense of style.

    BTW- We have a war-era double, and it’s quite pretty and is not expendable.

  • Tim

    U – G – L – Y – You ain’t got no alibi!

    Not even McMansions are this offensive to my eye. It looks like it wants to be a business.



  • daggerdave

    this is AWESOME!!!!! this is just what our city needs. FINALLY somebody’s got some style in this architectural wasteland of a city. brilliant, just brilliant…

  • Now we need to demo the houses on either side to make room for the drive thru.

    I’m thinking: “Deco Burgers”.

  • In case of flood, those things act as sails and the wind blows the house to dry land.

  • Hey! Let’s not be critical!

    It’s New Orleans’s first self-demolishing house. When a storm comes, those things on the front blow back, thereby crushing the house and preparing it for ‘dozing.

    Of course, the self-demolishing part presumes a prior evacuation. Hope the occupants read that part of the instruction book.

  • Varg

    Are those supposed to represent comets?

  • Oh dear. I appreciate the attempt at some kind of architectural decoration, but that is really bad. FUGLY, in fact. The columns are awful, the false front over the peak of the roof is beyond horrid, especially the faux ‘deco’ design, and the doors…yes, I must agree with the “Home Depot” assessment from above. Ghastly.

    Building cheap doesn’t have to mean building ugly, too. I may have to gouge my eyes out…good lord.

  • Sam

    Maybe it’s “green”. You can commit all kinds heresies if you attach the green label to it.



    There are lots of sites like this. We are apparently at the vanguard of this movement(at least, according to them, I’m not sure anyone asked us if we wanted to be the prototype). What’s particularly disturbing about the site above is that they have some understanding of the heritage, workmanship and style of the house but then still want to turn it into this beachhouse-looking-thingy.

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  • steve bergeron

    I live on the 200 block of s. alexander st. this building is just 3 blocks away. for your information, i witnessed the entire transformation (and indeed it was a transformation.)

    the building was a typical shotgun double. the owner widened the building by 5 feet on either side and added the art-deco flaps later.

    please be careful when dating homes by their foundations. old pre-war houses can easily have their piers replaced by CMUs. those piers are less than 6 months old.

    across the street is a slightly less repulsive modification. the entire facade of an old shotgun has been stuccoed over. in addition (and what is really tacky) is the aluminum gutter system that runs vertically down the house, then makes a 90 angle and runs 5 feet in order to dump the water on the sidewalk.

  • I saw the one across the street..it was special as well. Someone seems to have unloaded a spray truck of stucco. I will pass by and check out the gutters.

  • yes, I saw this delightful “renovation” when I, too, was reviewing houses on the demo list. And I, too, was stunned, speechless, and then screamed! I must say it is one of the MOST amazing things I’ve seen in quite a while. And that’s saying something. I noticed the one across the street also, but it’s not nearly as good as this one. It is now even more “complete,” with non-matching “Colonial” door surrounds. You really must see it for yourself. Stunning. Literally.
    BTW, NOT in an HDLC district – no design review in Mid City, only demo review by HCDRC.

  • Jessica Henricksen

    Those things are basketballs or big pieces of hail. Duh.

  • Quinn

    Is this Lisa Mazique’s new house in Miami?

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  • Kathleen

    it looks like an old time movie theatre in New Orleans, except the colors don’t match

  • ID Ellen

    What was so great about the 80’s was NOT the teal and peach overwhelm, it was the music. They got it all wrong; but were able to get to New Orleans anyway from whatever planet-I would love to see their landing craft.

  • Innocent Bystander

    Yes. They are butt-ugly but it looks to me as though they did the best they could with what they had. It sucks when you have to live next to something like this but the fact is, it isn’t anyone’s except the person who owns it. I loathe neighborhood associations.

  • Thank you for your comments, Mr Innocent someone has to be hatin,why not you

  • Randall

    Another property rights fanatic? Im guessing