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MPS Studio II

Urban Conservation student Cyndi Crews presenting preservation concepts for St Ann Street in Faubourg Treme to participants of the National Trust for Historic Preservation Main Streets Conference, on site.

Tulane City Center finds new home in Central City

New Wave Article

By: Barri Bronston

Long gone are the hair dryers, manicure stands and barbering stalls that once occupied much of the building at 2100 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd. in the Central City neighborhood of New Orleans. The one-time home of Katie’s School of Beauty Culture is now the satellite office of Tulane City Center, the applied urban research and outreach program of the Tulane University School of Architecture.

“A lot of our work is already in this part of town,” says Maurice Cox, Tulane City Center director. “Now our core mission, to serve New Orleans neighborhoods and nonprofit organizations, is perfectly aligned with our community-based location. We hope our presence will signal just how committed Tulane is to neighborhood revitalization.”

Located at the corner of Oretha Castle Haley and Josephine Street, the satellite office occupies the front portion of a 3,000-square-foot building renovated by Redmellon Restoration & Development in partnership with the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority, a state-chartered agency formed to help revitalize blighted neighborhoods.

The building includes two second-floor apartments as well as office space for Redmellon, whose owner Neal Morris received his bachelor’s, master’s of business administration and law degrees from Tulane. Morris is also an adjunct professor in the architecture school.

“We were looking for a neighborhood-building use for the space,“ Morris says. “I can’t imagine a better fit than City Center.” Working with community partners, Tulane City Center has been involved in the designing and building of dozens of neighborhood revitalization projects over the past several years including playgrounds, healthcare facilities, arts centers, urban farms and more.

Associate director Dan Etheridge says the new space allows City Center to hire four to six summer interns, particularly those with an interest in the rapidly growing field of public interest design. “So many of our students choose the Tulane School of Architecture because of the opportunity to do this sort of work,” Etheridge says.

John Klingman Names Best New Architecture in New Orleans - 2012

The National World War II Museum

US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center

This is the latest completed project in the seemingly ever-expanding World War II Museum complex, an institution with a strong national profile that’s a premier attractor of visitors to our city. There are few spaces in New Orleans that have the impact of the new Freedom Pavilion. One reason is its scale. However, unlike a hotel atrium, it’s activated both by the vintage aircraft that fill the space and by walkways at three levels across it and along its edge. Museum President Dr. Nick Mueller explains that the pavilion was intended to showcase the large scale “arsenal of democracy” artifacts. In the absence of large warships, the biggest of these may be the building itself. The immense precast concrete panels and the interior metal elements of acoustical panels, aluminum guardrails and steel gratings are architectural manifestations of the same kind of industrial productive capacity.

The huge north-facing front curtain wall ultimately will enfront the “parade ground.” It is spectacular at night with the contents highlighted in the glowing box. Architecturally, the moves are just right. The building has large expansive planer walls, but they’re tilted and skewed from the vertical and horizontal, creating a dynamic condition. The pavilion can also be used as a flexible event space, with a hydraulic stage that can rise from the flat concrete floor. With the aircraft forming a virtual ceiling, this is already one of the most memorable spaces in the city and a landmark from the bridge approach as well.

Voorsanger Mathes LLC; Bartholomew Voorsanger, design principal; Martin Stigsgaard, Masayuki Sono, lead designers; Peter Miller, Issei Suma, Anastasiya Konopitskaya; Edward C. Mathes, managing principal; Peter F. Priola, project manager; Scott M. Evans, project architect.

School of Liberal Arts Professors Advance Social Entrepreneurship Studies

New Wave Article by: Mary Sparacello

Barbara Hayley, School of Liberal Arts dance professor and coordinator in the Department of Theatre and Dance, was recently appointed to the Kaylene & Brad Beers Professorship II in Social Entrepreneurship in recognition of her unique approach to community service through scholarship… Full article HERE

Errol Barron to exhibit at the Reynolds -- Ryan Gallery at Newman School

Errol Barron has recently participated in the Isidore Newman School Visiting Artist Program. The appointment links a visiting practitioner with students, grades 4 through 12, using an exhibition to stimulate conversations about the practice of art and architecture.


Readers of this forum have probably heard rumors of gentrification in post-Katrina New Orleans. Residential shifts playing out in the Crescent City share many commonalities with those elsewhere, but also bear some distinctions and paradoxes. I offer these observations from the so-called Williamsburg of the South, a neighborhood called Bywater.

Gentrification arrived rather early to New Orleans, a generation before the term was coined. Writers and artists settled in the French Quarter in the 1920s and 1930s, drawn by the appeal of its expatriated Mediterranean atmosphere, not to mention its cheap rent, good food, and abundant alcohol despite Prohibition. Initial restorations of historic structures ensued, although it was not until after World War II that wealthier, educated newcomers began steadily supplanting working-class Sicilian and black Creole natives.

By the 1970s, the French Quarter was largely gentrified, and the process continued downriver into the adjacent Faubourg Marigny (a historical moniker revived by Francophile preservationists and savvy real estate agents) and upriver into the Lower Garden District (also a new toponym: gentrification has a vocabulary as well as a geography). It progressed through the 1980s-2000s but only modestly, slowed by the city’s abundant social problems and limited economic opportunity. New Orleans in this era ranked as the Sun Belt’s premier shrinking city, losing 170,000 residents between 1960 and 2005. The relatively few newcomers tended to be gentrifiers, and gentrifiers today are overwhelmingly transplants. I, for example, am both, and I use the terms interchangeably in this piece... Full Article HERE

Grover Mouton to exhibit at Octavia Gallery

Octavia Art Gallery is pleased to present Urban Visions by Tulane University architect and artist Grover Mouton. The exhibition presents a compendium of drawings created as part of the design process in a series of projects throughout China and the United States. The drawings were included in master planning documents and final presentations. Acting as a catalyst to explore design concepts, they demonstrated a humanized scale by assisting clients to understand larger urban design concepts.

Mouton began to study drawing while in Rome at the American Academy, having been awarded the Rome Prize (1972-3). “In contrast with rigid digital imagery, I found the use of hand drawing enabled clients to engage with designed qualities of the overall site rather than specific, small-scale details.” states Mouton. “My drawings were used to speak about density, walkability, and scale in a way that also expressed a real sense of place.” Mouton’s drawings depict concentrations of people on the street, park settings, high speed transportation, local landscapes, and historic landmarks.

Grover Mouton has served as Tulane University’s Adjunct Associate Professor of Architecture for 25 years, and is the founder and director of the Tulane Regional Urban Design Center (TRUDC), housed within the School of Architecture. The TRUDC conducts community outreach design initiatives for cities and towns throughout the Gulf South Region. The center also collaborates with the American Planning Association on large-scale urban design projects throughout China. Grover currently teaches Design Urbanism, a seminar that exposes architecture students to the urban design discipline through participation in real-time community outreach initiatives.

This exhibition has been made possible with generous support from the Dean’s Fund for Excellence (Tulane University School of Architecture).

Urban Visions will be on display from February 2 - 23, 2013.

Octavia Art Gallery is located at 4532 Magazine Street, New Orleans, LA 70115.
Hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10 am to 6 pm or by appointment.
For more information, contact 504-309-4249, or visit

Shanghai 1 by Grover Mouton, ©
Newsprint, graphite, ink and colored pencil • 11 x 14 inches

Conference on Natural Disasters and Cultural Heritage Protection: The Legalities

Earthquake damage, Beaufort, SC 1973

The laws of America seriously lack in covering responsibility and recourse for damage to cultural property affected by natural disasters. Join this half day conference to learn about the prospects of addressing this gap.

Friday, January 25, 2013
9:30 am to 12:30 pm
Historic New Orleans Collection, Williams Research Center
410 Charters Street in the French Quarter

Approved for 3 hours of CLE credit

Dutch Dialogues Options Studio work now online

Professor John Klingman’s ongoing Dutch Dialogues studio series at the Tulane School of Architecture continued in the fall of 2012 with an investigation of storing and treating runoff on a large urban site in New Orleans.

From the studio brief:

“The intention of the site development is to design a landscape of amenities that also has a great onsite water storage capacity in times of high rainfall. Water will remain a visible resource on the site during dry periods, released slowly to stabilize groundwater elevation and provide some available freshwater for neighborhood needs. The added storage capacity on the site will reduce the incidence of flooding in the immediately adjacent neighborhood as well. An important intention of the site development is to maximize the integration between water, landscape and architectural elements, and the site can be designed to enhance bio-remediation.”

Work from the studio is available as a pdf download. Professor Klingman is currently involved with Waggonner & Ball Architect’s Greater New Orleans Water Management Strategy, scheduled for completion in spring 2013.

'Haiti Redux' to premiere at the Prytania Theater

The Tulane community is invited to the Premiere, a free screening of the new documentary on Haiti’s rebuilding efforts. Haiti Redux is a study of how social entrepreneurs, NGOs, governments and community leaders are collaborating to help restore and construct sustainable communities primed for growth and prosperity. The film, a collaboration between Fountainhead Transmedia and New York University’s Schack Institute of Real Estate explores the process of reconstructing schools, orphanages, housing, and infrastructure developments in Haiti.

The screening takes place Jan. 24, 2013, 8pm at the Prytania Theater.