The high winds and heavy rains of Hurricanes Katrina and the subsequent widespread flooding damaged many buildings in Orleans Parish, LA. In the aftermath of the hurricane, 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.
FP&C has applied for FEMA Public Assistance funds to demolish Buildings 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, and 35A, the partial demolition and repair of Building 50, and construct a Post Headquarters Building within the Jackson Barracks National Register Historic District, New Orleans, Orleans Parish, LA.
Attachments 1, 2, 3, and 4 referenced below are contained in a single PDF file available here
The Area of Potential Effects (APE) for architectural resources includes all of area A-2 and portions of area A-1 and B shown on Attachment 1. The APE includes areas that will be indirectly affected by the proposed demolition. A number of standing structures shown on Attachment 1 have recently been reviewed under Section 106 and have been demolished or are currently being demolished. The APE for archaeological resources measures approximately 351 meters long by 50 meters wide, or approximately 3.9 acres, as shown on Attachment 2.
All affected structures are located within the Jackson Barracks National Register Historic District listed on November 7, 1976. According to the National Register nomination, Jackson Barracks' significance is based on the installation's architecture and its association with military history. FEMA, in consultation with SHPO, has reevaluated the 83 standing structures located within Jackson Barracks, and determined that Buildings 50, 51, 53, and 58 are eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places as contributing elements to the Jackson Barracks National Register Historic District. These buildings are eligible under National Register Criteria A and C as they reflect a period of major growth and expansion at Jackson Barracks from World War I to World War II. Brief descriptions of Buildings 50, 51, 53, and 58 and photographs of the buildings are included in Attachment 3. FEMA and SHPO determined that Buildings 52, 54, 55, 56, 57, and 35A are non-contributing elements to the Jackson Barracks National Register Historic District, see photographs in Attachment 4. Buildings 35a, 50, 52, 54, 55, and 56 are attached to the East perimeter wall of Jackson Barracks. Portions of the wall date to the 1897, although most of the wall dates from the WPA renovations. FEMA has determined that the portions of the wall that connect to Buildings 35a, 52, 54, 55, and 56 do not contribute to the National Register listed Jackson Barracks Historic District. The portion of the wall that connects to Building 50, a contributing structure, is also contributing to the historic district.
The scope of work indicates ground disturbing activities associated with the proposed demolition and foundation removal of Buildings 35a, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, and 58, and the construction of a new Headquarters Building. The existing structures rest upon a variety of foundations including brick pier, continuous brick, and concrete slab. A Phase I survey of Jackson Barracks was conducted in 2006 for the Louisiana Army National Guard. As part of this survey shovel tests were excavated in a five-meter grid in portions of the current APE that were not covered by structures or paving, and archaeological properties, identified as Locus 1 were investigated. Phase II testing of this eligible loci was conducted in 2007. Based on these investigations FEMA determined that Locus 1 is a contributing element to a previously identified, National Register eligible archaeological site.
The proposed demolition activities have a high potential to disturb intact archeological properties associated with Locus 1. The footprints of Buildings 51, 52, 53 and 54 extend partially into in Locus 1. There is a high potential for ground disturbance within the buildings' footprints and immediately adjacent to the buildings. Buildings 50 and 55 lie immediately adjacent to Locus 1 and may overlay additional archaeological properties since the presence of the buildings prohibited subsurface investigations in these areas.
FEMA has determined that the proposed demolition of the ten buildings will result in "Adverse Effect to Historic Properties", specifically to the Jackson Barracks National Register Historic District and to Locus 1 of the National Register-eligible archaeological site 16OR212. FEMA is seeking input from members of the public on ways to avoid, minimize, or mitigate the Adverse Effect.
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 December 2, 2009 at http://www.crt.state.la.us/culturalassets/fema106/ or by regular mail.
Mailed comments should be sent to:
Federal Emergency Management Agency
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 December 17, 2009.