NOAHH Completes Salvaged Rehab in St. Roch Neighborhood
In 2009, Louisiana state officials announced that a new LSU/VA Hospital would be built in the historic Mid-City of New Orleans. As part of an effort to preserve the architectural history of New Orleans, NOAHH worked with preservationists to identify architectural salvage in many homes that was deconstructed and repurposed through Habitat’s ReStore. Additionally, the City of New Orleans offered local construction non-profits the opportunity to relocate houses to their own lots to rehab and sell. As a program participant, NOAHH received a 700 square foot, 2 bedroom, 1 bathroom home from the hospital’s future footprint and began construction in early 2012. In August 2013, the affiliate passed the final inspection and the home now stands complete and as a testament to this partnership with the City of New Orleans.
The home was relocated from Mid-City to a Habitat lot in the St. Roch neighborhood. After a few delays, NOAHH began the rehab with an inspection to determine what could be rehabbed and what needed to be replaced. Due to the elements, much of what of the home remained in good condition was the flooring and framing of the house. NOAHH staff worked diligently to put it back together for a New Orleans Habitat Partner Family. During the home’s relocation, much of the flooring was removed, and our staff worked tirelessly on the jigsaw puzzle that was the salvaged flooring. When some of the flooring was lost in the move, NOAHH matched the flooring and found equally historic 100 year old heart-of-pine flooring to match for the hallway.
The floor plan was reconfigured creating a 1,000 square foot home with two bedrooms, one bath, a large deck and parking in the rear. The layout is that of a shotgun home, a popular style in New Orleans.
“We’ve never relocated and rehabbed a home for a partner family,” stated Jim Pate, executive director of New Orleans Area Habitat for Humanity. “In fact the whole project was a little ‘out of the box’ but during the process we have been able to identify key components of our rehab program that will allow us to better identify and take on more rehab construction projects.”
Unaware of the home’s history, New Orleans Habitat partner family Jameson Warren selected the home and plans to move in as soon as he has completes the NOAHH homeownership program which includes 350 hours of sweat-equity in lieu of a down payment, homeownership classes and escrow savings.
“I actually chose it by process of elimination,” Warren said. “I live in this area right now, so I know it well. This was the best house, by far. I like the deck on the side. I like the kitchen. I actually know how everything is going to be already.”
Warren is a lifelong New Orleanian, having grown up in the Garden District. He has one daughter and two godchildren and says his goals are to own a home by the age of 25 and a business by the age of 30.
“Thanks to New Orleans Habitat part of my dreams are coming true,” he said. “I will have a beautiful two bedroom house. I didn’t always know what I wanted, but thanks to my mother I was able to quickly understand. My mother and father both taught me some important lessons. Things were not easy at first. I work very hard and prayed, and I put in the time to make my dreams come true.”
Currently, NOAHH is rehabbing homes in the Upper Ninth Ward and St. Roch with plans to continue into Central City. New Orleans Habitat has incorporated rehabbed homes into its homeownership program offering low-income families the opportunity to buy homes that have been rehabbed or are new construction through the no-interest program designed to assist low-income families to become homeowners. All partner families must qualify for NOAHH’s home ownership program by having the need for shelter, the willingness to partner and good or no credit.