This computer crash holds some historic significance
Government computer crashes have become so common they rarely register in the news these days. But, rather than making history, a computer meltdown in Louisiana’s Orleans Parish Civil District Court may be helping to preserve history.
Technical difficulties have slowed down land acquisition proceedings needed to make room for the new $995 million Veterans Affairs hospital in New Orleans, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reports, giving more time for preservationists to relocate a few more historic homes ahead of the wrecking ball.
The relocation was scheduled to end Oct. 31, but computer problems discovered Oct. 26 led to the loss of online mortgage records and delays in demolition. The relocations are being organized by a program called Builders of Hope and its regional director, Casius Pealer, told Outliers that the crash bought some time, but slowed his project as well. “We can’t move houses we can’t acquire,” he says, adding that at least eight relocations have been delayed.
Still, some 40 houses had been moved by Oct. 31, and Pealer says it appears that 67 should have been moved by Dec. 3. While experts have deemed about 50 homes as historically significant, Pealer says some of these were in disrepair. “Our biggest concern is that the bones are good,” he says. “If structurally it’s good, we move it, rehab it, and make it into affordable housing.” An actual relocation takes one to two days and involves taking off the roof, shoring up the walls, disconnecting utilities and finding a route that can accommodate the move. “There are a million different challenges—one house had a beehive in it and it took an extra day to get rid of that,” Pealer says.