Live Online Now: Plight of Mid-City New Orleans Comes Before LA House Committee

Posted on: January 22nd, 2009 by National Trust for Historic Preservation 1 Comment

The Louisiana House of Representatives Appropriations Committee is meeting today to discuss the possible reuse of Charity Hospital as a medical facility. The Foundation for Historical Louisiana and the National Trust for Historic Preservation will present a plan that would transform Charity Hospital into a state-of-the-art medical facility, spare demolition of the historic Mid-City neighborhood, and return medical care to New Orleans more quickly and at less cost less than constructing a new hospital. Visit the Louisiana House website to watch live online. (RealPlayer plugin required.)

If you're not able to tune in, today's New Orleans Times-Picayune has a good article about the hearings: LSU-VA Hospital hearing set today at state Capitol.

Check back later today for a full report later from our New Orleans Field Office staff.

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One Response

  1. Kenneth Ehrlich

    February 2, 2009

    I wish to commend Mr Gallas and others who rightly question the “cloak and dagger” negotiations that have led to the proposal to abandon Charity Hospital and rebuild in the historic neighborhoods of MidCity in New Orleans.

    My wife and I spent 5 days during and after Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans at the J. bennett Johnston building of Tulane Medical Center. Charity Hospital was no more flooded than were the neighboring Tulane building that were restored to service very quickly in 2006. Only Charity Hospital was left to fester. We have reports from volunteers who moved into and cleaned up Charity when kost of the water was renoved and found it to be remarkably in good shape. The State is certainly resorting to hyperbole when is says that the Hospital received more than 400 million dolars in damage and the Fema estimate is closer to the true amount of damage. We believe with good evidence that a consipacy was begun immediately after the storm to not rebuild Charity. Lost is all the discussion we have read in the press is: what will be done to the existing Charity Hospital building if it is not to be reused as a Hospital?

    We think we know the answer. Tulane, no mentioned in news articles, most likely will “graciously” step in and offer to “preserve” the Charity building if they are either given the building at no cost or for very little money. They will then fix it up as office, hotel or clinic space, sell the Tidewater building that they now own, and claim kudos for their good work in preserving an historic building.

    We think this scenario makes so much sense because it has never been mentioned in any new article we have seen in calculating the cost for the new proposed hospital of what would be the cost of tearing down Charity and the VA hospital nor what would be done with the land.

    Please consider our comments when you appraise what is behind the recent decisions by the state and federal governments with regard to building a new medical center.

    Sincerely

    Kenneth Ehrlich