DHS Seal - FEMA    
 
FEMA Section 106 Notices for Louisiana
Comment on "Public Notice Regarding Historic Review of the St. Frances Xavier Cabrini Church, 5500 Paris Avenue, New Orleans, Louisiana with linked PDF attachments "
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Name: Name redacted at the request of the author
City: New Orleans
Specific
property
affected:
5500 Paris Ave., New Orleans
Comments: "When the idea was originally proposed and agreed upon, it was totally different. There was compromise then.

If you toured a house with the intention of buying and agreed what would stay in the house and what would be done by the seller, then the seller changed his mind after you signed a contract, then the contract would no longer be valid. Am I right?"

At no time did any proposal made by the Holy Cross board in any way include the permanent salvaging of any of the buildings on either the SFC or the Redeemer-Seton campus. The earliest proposal included the demolition of every building currently on the SFC portion of the tract; temporary classroom buildings would have been set up in the parking area at Paris and Prentiss while this were going on, and simultaneously efforts would be made to rehab the second floor of the Redeemer-Seton classroom building for temporary use while new classroom buildings were being built on the SFC portion. The Redeemer-Seton rehab was later found to be economically unfeasible. The possibility was broached that Holy Cross could build a new, much smaller church/multi-use center on the campus, in part using SFC insurance proceeds, which SFC parishioners could assume as the new SFC church should the parish ever rebound to the extent that it is reinstated by the Archdiocese. This was later dropped when the Archdiocese pointed out that it could not in good conscience release SFC parish funds (the insurance claims money) to be used to build a church when it was not at all clear that there would be enough people to reconstitute the parish at any time in the near future. Holy Cross determined that they could not fiscally justify the cost to build a new church to eventually "give away" without using those proceeds. Additionally, how does one design a church building to meet a parish's needs when there is no possible way of knowing what the needs or demographics of that parish will end up being, or even if the parish will exist at all?

The decision was made by the HC Board to adjust the proposal to reflect two possible options, either of which the SFC parishioners could choose if they elected to accept the HC offer. Of course, they could also decide to reject both options. Option 1 involved the sale of the entire parcel of land, with the knowledge that every existing building on the site would be demolished to make room for the Holy Cross campus, as presented in site plan and elevation form to the parishioners. Option 2 would involve the sale to HC of the entire parcel save approximately 1 1/2 acres at the corner of Paris and Prentiss, which would be retained by SFC parish as a possible site for a future new church building should the parish be reinstituted by the Archdiocese at a future date. All existing buildings would be demolished under Option 2 as well.

Yes, the proposal did change somewhat before the SFC parishioners voted on it. No, those changes did not include the withdrawal of any offer to retain and rehab any existing SFC building.