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FEMA Section 106 Notices for Louisiana
"Public Notice Regarding Section 106 Review of State of Louisiana, LA Department of Education/Recovery School District (RSD) Proposal to Demolish the Thomy Lafon Elementary School, 2601 Seventh Street, 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 Department of Education/Recovery School District (RSD) Proposal to Demolish the Thomy Lafon Elementary School, 2601 Seventh Street, 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 Thomy Lafon Elementary School, 2601 Seventh 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 Lafon 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 main classroom building (Building C) and the administration building (Building A) at the Thomy Lafon School are eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places. FEMA and the SHPO have also determined that the library (Building D) and the cafeteria-auditorium building (Building B) are not eligible for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places.

In order to identify archaeological resources that may be affected by the proposed demolition, 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 Thomy Lafon Elementary School is located on the site of the former Locust Grove Cemetery #1 and #2. Locust Grove Cemetery #1 opened in 1859 and was located in the block bounded by Sixth, Seventh, Magnolia (now Freret) and Locust (now S. Robertson) streets. Locust Grove Cemetery #2 was opened in 1877 and closed in 1879. It was located on the block bounded by Sixth, Harmony, Locust, and Magnolia Streets. Both cemeteries were demolished in 1905 for the construction of the first Thomy Lafon School. It is uncertain if all burials associated with the cemeteries were removed during the construction of the original and existing Thomy Lafon schools. FEMA has determined that demolition of the Thomy Lafon 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 23, 2009 from 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm at the C.J. Peete Community Center, 2514 Washington Street, New Orleans, LA 70113. 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 of the Thomy Lafon 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 Agency
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,  Tulane Libraries, Special Collections, Southeastern Architectural Archive
c. 1954 by Frank Lotz Miller, Tulane Libraries,
Special Collections, Southeastern Architectural Archive

c. 2008 by FEMA
c. 2008 by FEMA