Monday, April 18, 2011

NOLA Cultural Center 1963

As part of the new exhibit at the Southeastern Architectural Archive, we have featured this presentation drawing of the proposed Cultural Center for New Orleans. Designed by local architects Mathes, Bergman, Favrot & Associates, the project was conceived as a part of a "downtown triangle" development project that included the Civic Center and International Trade Mart Complex. Modeled after New York's Lincoln Center, the Cultural Center was intended to consist of theaters, an auditorium, an art museum, community facilities, and copious parking lots.

With an estimated cost of $18 million, the plaza was to extend from the Orleans-Basin Connection to St. Philip Street, and from N. Rampart to N. Villere Streets. Widespread site clearance began in 1966, after the relocation of 122 families. Hampered by financial shortfalls, the CC was delayed and eventually abandoned.

If you want to learn more about the project and the history of Louis Armstrong Park, read Michael Crutcher's new Tremé: Race and Place in a New Orleans Neighborhood. The author will be reading from his book 21 April 2011 at 6:00 pm, Octavia Books, New Orleans. Click here to learn more.

Image above: Mathes, Bergman, Favrot & Associates.
Cultural Center of New Orleans. Scheffer Studio. 1963. Southeastern Architectural Archive, Special Collections Division, Tulane University Libraries.

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