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FEMA Section 106 Notices for Louisiana
"Public Notice Regarding Section 106 Review of Viability Analysis and Installation of the Vandal Protection System (VPS)
Pierre A. Capdau Junior High School, 3821 Franklin Avenue, New Orleans, LA
Applicant: Orleans Parish School Board (OPSB)
Seeking Public Comment
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FEMA Department of Homeland Security Seal

Public Notice Regarding Section 106 Review of Viability Analysis and Installation of the Vandal Protection System (VPS)
Pierre A. Capdau Junior High School, 3821 Franklin Avenue, New Orleans, LA
Applicant: Orleans Parish School Board (OPSB)
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. In the aftermath of the hurricanes, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is issuing this public notice as a part of its responsibilities under 36 CFR Part 800, the regulations implementing Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, as amended (NHPA). This notice applies to activities carried out by FEMA's Public Assistance (PA) program implemented under the authority of the Robert T. Stafford Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, 42 U.S.C. 5152-5206.

Pierre A. Capdau Junior High School
Pierre A. Capdau Junior High School
click to enlarge
In 2009, FEMA, the Recovery School District (RSD), OPSB, the Louisiana State Historic Preservation Officer, and the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation entered into a Secondary Programmatic Agreement (RSD/OPSB 2PA) in order to fulfill FEMA's responsibilities under Section 106 of the NHPA and 36 CFR Part 800 regarding the implementation of the School Facilities Master Plan, which will be funded with assistance from FEMA and other Federal agencies. As part of the School Facilities Master Plan, the OPSB is requesting that FEMA provide funds for the following projects on the Pierre A. Capdau Junior High School campus:

  • Viability analysis to evaluate potential re-occupancy
  • Installation of the vandal protection system (VPS) to secure the facility
The regulations at 36 CFR Part 800 and the RSD/OPSB 2PA require FEMA to identify if any of the properties are listed in or eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP); to assess the effects the work will have on historic properties; and to seek ways to avoid, minimize, or mitigate any adverse effects. The Capdau campus is located within the Edgewood Park Historic District, which was determined eligible for NRHP listing by FEMA with SHPO concurrence in 2005. FEMA has identified the main building as a contributing resource to this NRHP-eligible historic district.

FEMA previously issued a public notice for this campus that described OPSB's intention to mothball the building in accordance with the National Park Service's Preservation Brief #31, which describes the process needed to deactivate a building for an extended period of time. At that time, FEMA determined that mothballing the building would result in a No Adverse Effect with Conditions. OPSB no longer plans to mothball the building and instead conducted a viability analysis to evaluate potential re-occupancy; and secured the building by installing the VPS. The OPSB intends to place the property up for auction on November 8, 2012.

Marked aerial photograph showing the location of Pierre A. Capdau Junior High School
Marked aerial photograph showing the location of Pierre A. Capdau Junior High School
click to enlarge
Pursuant to the RSD/OPSB 2PA, undertakings that involve the land banking, securing, or demolition of schools are considered to be adverse effects. Furthermore, there has been a change of the character of the property's use when the building was taken out of service as a school in 2010; it has been vacant since that time. FEMA has determined that the proposed securing of the facility will have an Adverse Effect to Historic Properties and is proposing to mitigate the adverse effects through Standard Mitigation Measures (digital photographs; stabilization and archival reproduction of the original architectural drawings; and written data related to the current condition, history, and description of the building) in accordance with Stipulation IX.A.2(a) and (b) of the RSD/OPSB 2PA.

Any member of the public is encouraged to provide views on how the project may affect historic properties and ways that these effects may be avoided, minimized, or mitigated. Comments may be submitted to FEMA for a 15-day period starting October 22, 2012 by regular mail or at www.crt.state.la.us/culturalassets/fema106.

Mailed comments should be sent to:
FEMA Mail Center
Historic Preservation
1 Seine Court, 1st Floor Mail Room
New Orleans, LA 70114

If mailed, comments and requests must be postmarked by November 5, 2012.