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Month: July 2007

Razing New Orleans

Remember what I said about Bienville being just the tip of the iceberg? There are 1700+ properties on the “imminent threat” list. I just discovered my next door neighbor’s house is one of them! I called him (he’s in Texas) and he was shocked and alarmed. He has not been notified that his house is slated for demolition.

In an effort to visualize the scope of these demolitions, I’ve been fiddling around with and Google Earth.

Imminent Threat

(I’ve posted the data to Google Earth Community for the true geeks.)

Of course I’ve been paying particular attention to the demolition in Mid-City. There are a lot of them, not just along Bienville. (I’ve posted Google Earth data for just Mid-City too.) According to a friend of mine, “The last major demolition of historic houses at this scale for urban renewal was the demolition of Treme for Louis Armstrong Park.”

I got an interesting phone call yesterday from a woman who read my blog and wanted to share some information anonymously. I asked her to put it in writing, so she sent me the following via e-mail, which I thought was quite extraordinary.

Catching Up

I’ve been preoccupied, so a lot of very important stuff has slipped past in the last week and I haven’t had a chance to write about it. Herewith, a grab-bag of updates.

  • Xy’s had a moderate amount of morning sickness, but she’s coping pretty well. She canceled a conference she’d been planning to attend in DC next week. Too bad, she was looking forward to it and I was looking forward to having her out of my hair for a week.
  • Someone smashed the rear window of the abandoned car that’s still on our street.


  • Geraldine and “the girls” who used to live across the street stopped by yesterday. I didn’t even recognize Danielle when she knocked on our door, and Donika has grown too. They are going to rent a place in New Orleans East and hope to be back in their old rental soon. It still needs a lot of work; Geraldine said the owner’s waiting on the “Road to Home” program. I’m amazed that she’s so determined to return to this specific rental unit, but it sure would be nice to have them back.
  • I knew eventually I’d find a connection between Dominica and New Orleans, but I didn’t think it would be as weird as Operation Red Dog.
  • I took the Happy Planet Index survey and scored 32.7, which they say is “similar to that of countries such as Djibouti, Cameroon or Ethiopia. Sorry to say that this is below the world average of 46… Your score is about the same as that of your country, 28.8.”
  • Senator Vitter’s days in office are numbered. Just thought I’d mention that.
  • John Edwards has virtually endorsed the Gulf Coast Civic Works Project.
  • Citizen Crime Watch blows the competition to the weeds, as far as the interface. The city’s site does appear to have a more complete listing of incidents. They should share that data.
  • I’ve discovered I enjoy having a small amount (half a glass) of wine with lunch, and a full glass with dinner. I can skip the wine at lunch, but I’m committed for dinner.
  • Today I tried to sleep in but ended up riding my bike out to the fitness center for a workout before work. I guess that means I’m addicted to exercise. I’ve been sticking to a light workout routine every other day, or every third day.
  • My parents celebrated their 45th wedding anniversary. My first thought upon hearing this was, “Wow! They’ve now been married longer than I’ve been alive.” It doesn’t take a math genius to realize that’s always been the case. There was a nice story about them in the Reporter-Times.