Thursday, July 10, 2008

the child is the monument


Dozens of public school buildings in Orleans Parish are threatened by demolition or "complete replacement" in the preliminary School Facilities Master Plan.

Tonight (Thursday 7.10) there is a Facilities Master Plan Community Update Meeting at the Dryades YMCA, 2000 Philips St. @ 6:30 PM.

My concern for the fate of our Modernist monuments does not supercede my concern for the fate of our children. In fact, they are entwined. Charles Colbert, architect was the original designer of the new school building program initiated in 1950. He encouraged his fellow architects to consider the "emotional and spiritual needs of children" in their design of school buildings. "The child is the monument," he wrote.
Two of unoccupied school facilities, Thomy Lafon Elementary and Phillis Wheatley Elementary, were built on raised piers which saved them from the flood. The initial design was driven by a desire to create ample play space protected from the elements on an urban site. They were designed in a period of sheer optimism and growth. The conservation of these structures can serve as symbols of the city's rebirth, as we recover the future from the past.

1 comment:

amy said...

Thanks so much for posting these images.