Building skill in New Orleans

Educating after natural disasters; training in traditional craftsmanship
New Orleans has one of the oldest and largest stocks of historic buildings and unique building types in America, owing to a mix of cultures and building traditions from Spain, France, England, Canada, Ireland, Germany, Africa and Haiti.
The “Rebuilding Communities” Apprentice Programme grew out of a response by HRH The Prince of Wales to the devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina on the City’s renowned historic architecture. 
A lack of traditional building skills in the local population and a low quality of rebuilding threatened New Orleans’ character. There arose the need for a program geared to reviving the building crafts for the rehabilitation of historic architecture, while generating jobs and rebuilding community assets 
In the six years since Katrina there has been much debate and a recurring determination for a more responsible and sustainable approach to the New Orleans rebuilding.  Preservationists recognize that calls for wholesale demolition represent a serious threat to the City’s historic built heritage. 
The Rebuilding Communities Programme was introduced as a combined educational and work program with a goal to graduate apprentices learned in the traditional crafts; increasing traditional building capacity and raising the number of master craftsmen in the city. The program would contribute to the lagging job market, giving residents with few skills a valuable trade. The apprentices would rebuild historic houses in their neighbourhoods, and thereby participate in the recovery and regeneration of their own community.


For further information, please contact  Simon on or call him at +44 (0) 20 7613 8526