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Wednesday, May 15, 2019

The second of three panel discussions tackling climate change and historic preservation happens tonight at the New Canal Lighthouse - [Curbed New Orleans - All]


“How do we live with water and adapt to the changes that are happening, and how do we protect and restore our architectural gems?”

Last weekend, floodwaters inundated cars, homes, and businesses throughout New Orleans. For some, including The Broad Theater in Mid-City, it was the second flood in as many years.

A hurricane didn’t cause the floods. Neither did failures of the levees and pumping stations that keep this below-sea-level city from filling up like a bowl. It was something more innocuous, less easy to flee: a spring thunderstorm.

More than 5 inches of rain fell on New Orleans in a seven-hour timeframe early Sunday morning, but the event didn’t make national news. Locals carried on with little fuss, filing damage claims and mopping up floors with practiced resignation. As The Broad Theater tweeted, “we’ve gotten good at this.”

New Orleanians have gotten good at living in what Mayor LaToya Cantrell called “a city that floods.” But that doesn’t make it easy—and by all indications, things are going to get worse before they get better.

To that end, The Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation (LPBF) and Preservation Resource Center (PRC) co-present “Historic Preservation in the Face of Climate Change: Adapt,” a panel discussion hosted by the New Canal Lighthouse (8001 Lakeshore Drive) from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 16 (that’s tonight).

“With climate change, these rain events are going to be more frequent,” said LPBF and PRC spokesperson Rachel Strassel. “How do we live with water and adapt to the changes that are happening, and how do we protect and restore our architectural gems?”

The event brings together three experts who will discuss our changing landscape from a variety of perspectives.

Chris Cook, director of the New Canal Lighthouse Museum, will share the LPBF’s efforts to save Louisiana’s coastline and create multiple lines of defense from catastrophic flooding. Louisette Scott, director of the Department of Planning and Development for Mandeville, will speak about flooding issues on the Northshore. Bryan D. Block, director of the Vieux CarrĂ© Commission, will discuss ways to preserve historic buildings from flooding, hail and other weather-related incidents.

“Living in this area, we have such a complex relationship with water,” Strassel said. “A lot of people think, ‘Oh, I can’t do anything about this. It’s up to the Sewerage and Water Board.’ But it’s not just on them. We have to plan for these things and build landscapes that are able to drain water properly. It’s not a one-time thing of cleaning your storm drain, moving your car to neutral ground and hoping for the best.”

This free panel discussion is the second of three in a series about historic preservation in the face of climate change. It takes place at the New Canal Lighthouse (8001 Lakeshore Drive) from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. May 16 (that’s tonight). The final installment takes place from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. June 19.


Source: Curbed New Orleans - All


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