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FEMA Section 106 Notices for Louisiana
"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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FEMA Department of Homeland Security Seal

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


The high winds and heavy rains of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita and the subsequent widespread flooding damaged many buildings in Orleans Parish, including the Phillis Wheatley Elementary School, 2300 Dumaine Street, New Orleans, LA. In the aftermath of the hurricanes, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is issuing this public notice as part of its responsibilities under the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation's (ACHP) regulations, 36 CFR Part 800, implementing Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, as amended. This notice applies to activities carried out by the Public Assistance (PA) program implemented under the authority of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, 42 U.S.C. 5152-5206.

RSD has determined through the School Facility Master Plan adopted by the Orleans Parish School Board on November 6, 2008 and the Louisiana State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education on November 12, 2008 that the repair of this damaged facility does not meet its needs and has requested that FEMA provide funds for the demolition of the Wheatley School and the subsequent construction of a new school. The ACHP's regulations require FEMA, as the Federal funding agency, to identify if any of the properties that may be affected by this project are listed in or eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places and to assess the effect the project will have on these properties.

FEMA, in consultation with the State Historic Preservation Officer (SHPO), has determined that the Phillis Wheatley Elementary School is individually eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places. The area of potential effect for this proposed project is located within the within the boundaries of the Esplanade Ridge National Register Historic District, but the school was constructed after the district's period of significance, 1830 - 1930, and is not a contributing property to the historic district. The design and construction of a replacement school may affect the historic district.

In order to identify archaeological resources that may be affected by the proposed demolition and reconstruction, FEMA examined maps to identify the locations of previously recorded archaeological sites and any buildings that were located on the project site prior to the construction of the school. The block was fully developed with residential structures and associated outbuildings by the late 1880's, and appears to have remained in residential use until it was cleared in the 1950's to allow for the construction of the Wheatley School. It is uncertain if intact archaeological resources associated with these earlier residential structures may be present on the Wheatley school site. FEMA has determined that demolition and replacement of the Phillis Wheatley Elementary School will constitute an Adverse Effect to historic properties and is seeking input from members of the public on ways to avoid, minimize, or mitigate this adverse effect.

FEMA has scheduled a public meeting on September 22, 2009 from 6:30 pm to 9:00 pm at the Sojourner Truth Neighborhood Center, 2200 Lafitte Street, New Orleans, LA 70119. This meeting will provide the public with the opportunity to find out about FEMA's Historic Preservation Review and express views on historic preservation issues related to the demolition and replacement of the Phillis Wheatley Elementary School. Any member of the public is encouraged to provide views on this project to FEMA. Comments can be submitted to FEMA for a 15-day period beginning on September 15, 2009 at http://www.crt.state.la.us/culturalassets/fema106/ or by regular mail.

Mailed comments should be sent to:

Federal Emergency Management
FEMA-1603/1607-DR-LA
Louisiana Transitional Recovery Office
1250 Poydras Street, 17th Floor
New Orleans, LA 70113

If mailed, comments and requests must be physically received at this address by September 30, 2009.

c.1954 by Frank Lotz Miller
c.1954 by Frank Lotz Miller

2008 by FEMA
2008 by FEMA