Roof problems delay New Orleans jazz park

March 29, 2008 at 7:00 PM
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NEW ORLEANS, March 29 (UPI) -- The opening of the New Orleans Jazz National Historical Park has been delayed by major roof problems in the 1820s building that is its centerpiece.

A few months ago, John Quirk, who has been in charge of the development of the park, expected Perseverance Hall to open in March, The (New Orleans) Times-Picayune reported. Now, he is looking at September if nothing else goes wrong.

When work began on the building's roof, the old slates turned out to hide dry rot and damage from moisture and termites.

"The roof replacement budget was $234,000. The structural repairs drove the cost up to $470,000," Quirk said.

The building has also developed a mold problem because of its exposure to the elements. Quirk is also concerned about possible flooding from lagoons in the 32-acre Armstrong Park, named after New Orleans jazz great Louis Armstrong, which surrounds the building.

Plans call for the removal of turtles, fish and other wildlife, and of debris and sediment from the water.

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