Louisiana Landmarks Society Awards 2024 | AOS Interior Environments
The Louisiana Landmarks Society’s 2024 Awards for Excellence in Historic Preservation were celebrated in grand style on Tuesday, May 14, 2024, from 5:30 to 7:30 pm at the historic Gallier Hall in downtown New Orleans. Guests gathered to honor outstanding preservation projects and recognize the crucial importance of safeguarding New Orleans' historic buildings and structures. New this year, the prestigious awards ceremony was co-hosted by the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Economy, which served as a testament to the dedication of individuals and organizations committed to preserving the city’s architectural and cultural treasures.
Louisiana Landmarks Society, 2024 Awards for Excellence in Historic Preservation, Dew Drop Inn, Ryan Gootee General Contractors, Studio Kiro, Tulane Thirteen15, Albert Architecture, SCNZ Architecture, historic preservation, New Orleans architecture, hospitality design, New Orleans music venue, New Orleans downtown apartment, Tulane student housing
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Louisiana Landmarks Society Awards 2024

The Louisiana Landmarks Society’s 2024 Awards for Excellence in Historic Preservation were celebrated in grand style on Tuesday, May 14, 2024, from 5:30 to 7:30 pm at the historic Gallier Hall in downtown New Orleans. Preservationists, architects, interior designers, contractors and developers gathered at the impressive Greek Revival building, designed by James Gallier Sr., to honor outstanding preservation projects and recognize the crucial importance of safeguarding New Orleans’ historic buildings and structures. New this year, the prestigious awards ceremony was co-hosted by the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Economy, which served as a testament to the dedication of individuals and organizations committed to preserving the city’s architectural and cultural treasures.

The ceremony was gracefully emceed by the renowned Peggy Scott Laborde, an Emmy Award-winning producer, host and author known for her work on Steppin’ Out (New Orleans’ only weekly arts and entertainment discussion program—now in its 38th season on WYES-TV.) To help set the tone for a memorable evening, guests also enjoyed a performance from Chicago-based musician Eddie Torrez. As a trained architect, his dual expertise in music and preservation studies mirrored the important intersection of cultural heritage and artistic expression.

The Louisiana Landmarks Society selected ten projects completed in 2023 in Orleans Parish, including the French Quarter, that present outstanding examples of restoration, rehabilitation, or new construction appropriate to historic neighborhoods. René Fransen, President of Louisiana Landmarks Society, shared in a news release, “The diversity among the award-winning projects showcases the very best of historic preservation across New Orleans’ many notable neighborhoods and communities. This year’s honorees embody the vibrant tapestry of our city’s architectural legacy.”

Notably, many of this year’s projects were rehabilitation and restoration projects of current and former residential structures and hotels. By promoting historic preservation through education and advocacy, Louisiana Landmarks Society ensures that New Orleans’s rich architectural beauty and significance are maintained for future generations, playing a crucial role in keeping the city’s spirit and history alive.

Congratulations to all of this year’s winners! View the full list on Nola.com. AOS was honored to have worked on the following projects that were recognized:

Thirteen15 Exterior Photo Source: Louisiana Landmarks Society

Thirteen15

1315 Gravier Street

Team: Albert Architecture/SCNZ; IMC Consulting Engineers; Morphy Makofsky; Structural Engineers; Hernandez Consulting and Construction; New Orleans Redevelopment Fund 2740

Thirteen15, formerly known as The Warwick Hotel, has been an institution in the New Orleans’ CBD since 1952. Situated close to landmarks like City Hall, the main branch of the New Orleans Public Library, and Charity Hospital, the 12-story building recently underwent a transformation to preserve its mid-century modern design while embracing updated functionality.

The Warwick was built in 1951, showcasing a contemporary aesthetic with aluminum door and window frames, complemented by brick detailing and glass blocks. Inside, the lobby featured terrazzo floors, marble wainscoting, and jewel-toned paint. The building housed commercial spaces and numerous apartments; however, it fell into a period of disuse following Hurricane Katrina. Thirteen15’s restoration meticulously preserved its structural integrity and historic layout. The lobby was revived with new terrazzo flooring and restored skylights to illuminate the vertical cores. A reduction in unit counts allowed for more spacious apartments with modern amenities, kitchenettes, living areas and bedrooms, all with a refreshed mid-century modern appeal by Ferrand Design.

On the exterior, the building received a facelift with fresh paint, updated storefront windows, and signage. The project integrated sustainable practices by mitigating storm-water runoff in rain gardens and courtyards. As a result, the renovation prioritized preservation of the building’s mid-century modern roots—an effort that was awarded with historic tax credits—while simultaneously modernizing its systems and creating pleasant apartments for medical students working at nearby hospitals and increasing the size of Tulane’s downtown campus.

See more photos of the project here.

Photos courtesy of Rush Jagoe

Dew Drop Inn

2836 Lasalle Street

Team: Ryan Gootee General Contractors; Studio Kiro; PACE Group; HG Engineering; Creative Engineering Group; BAi, LLC; Patch LA; Batture LLC; Leaaf Environmental LLC; Civic Studio; RYAN; Site 504; Associated Food Equipment & Supplies; M.R. Montero Electronics; Bilbo Information Technology Solutions

The Dew Drop Inn, located at 2836 Lasalle Street in Central City, was established as a barbershop in 1939. Over the years, it evolved into a multifaceted business, encompassing a music venue, hotel, and restaurant by 1945. The site became a hub for renowned blues, jazz, and R&B musicians, offering a welcoming space for both local and national Black acts, even during the era of racial segregation.

However, the Dew Drop’s decline began with the closure of its music venue in 1970, followed by the shuttering of the barbershop in 2002. Hurricane Katrina’s devastation in 2005 left the hotel abandoned and deteriorating for years. Recognizing its significance, the Louisiana Landmarks Society designated the Dew Drop Inn as an endangered historic site thirteen years ago. In 2022, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places, defining its global renown among music enthusiasts.

The project to rehabilitate the Dew Drop Inn sought to revive its original purpose as a hotel and music venue while honoring its musical traditions and African-American heritage as integral to New Orleans’ cultural fabric. However, restoring this historic landmark posed numerous challenges. Years of neglect and the impact of Katrina had left the building structurally compromised, necessitating extensive renovations. The project involved intricate structural repairs, including shoring up walls and addressing water damage.

Moreover, securing financing for the project proved complex, exacerbated by the volatile economic climate amid the COVID-19 pandemic and Hurricane Ida. A combination of creative financing strategies, including New Market Tax Credits and Community Development Block Grants, was crucial to overcoming these obstacles. Despite the challenges, the project persevered, leveraging Historic Tax Credits after the original facade from 1945 was uncovered during pre-construction. Today, the Dew Drop Inn stands as a testament to its historical significance while revitalizing its role in New Orleans’ cultural landscape.

See more photos of the project here.

Sources

Keen-Boehm, Meghan. “Dew Drop Inn, Hotel Monteleone among 2024 Louisiana Landmarks Society preservation award winners.” New Orleans City Business. Published April 19, 2024. Web.

Louisiana Landmarks Society. “Announcing the Winners of the 2024 Awards for Excellence in Historic Preservation.” Web.

NOLA,com. “Top 10 Orleans Parish historic restorations in 2023 are named by Louisiana Landmarks Society.” Published April 26, 2024. Web.

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