Updated: Apr 20
The restoration of a former school in Gentilly to become housing for low income seniors.
Picardie Tackles Meticulous Millwork Restoration
The former Pierre A. Capdau School was built in 1922 and designed by the architect E.A. Christy. E.A. Christy was the architect for the New Orleans Parish School Board and designed over 50 public schools between 1911 - 1940. This three-story building was designed in the Beaux-Arts style of architecture which characteristics include sculptural decoration, which you will find on the facade of the building, modern lines, symmetry, a flat roof, and a raised first floor.
The school moved from the Franklin Avenue location in 2010 and the building was sold in 2012. The old school building is in the process of being restored under the National Park Services regulations for Historic Preservation under TKTMJ Incorporated construction. The existing millwork original to the building was carefully removed and salvaged by Picardie. Such millwork restored and installed includes the shaker style doors with glass lites, door casing, window sill casing, door frames, transom panel with glass lite, single wide transom windows, double wide transom windows, corridor windows, French doors with multiple glass lites, side lites, all exterior windows, and original casework from the school.
That winds up being 330 windows, 660 sashes, 100 doors including exterior French doors with site lite and transoms, and 8,000 plus pieces of glass. It took the Picardie team about 5 months to carefully restore or replicate the original cypress millwork. Picardie was successful in restoring 100% of the original interior doors, 85% of the exterior doors, and 70% of the windows. The millwork that could not be salvage was carefully replicated with Spanish cedar.
The building will now become beautiful housing for low income seniors. The complex will have 80 units and a portion reserved for seniors with disabilities.