Sunday, December 5, 2010

The Charity Hospital Option - Looking Better all the Time

Today's Times-Picayune piece - solidly factual in its assessment - cannot help but highlight the folly of the decision to build the University Medical Center in Lower Mid-City.

This paragraph, while objective in form, says it all:

Further delays could threaten to push UMC's opening date into 2015. Aug. 29 of that year would mark a full decade after Hurricane Katrina led to the flooding that incapacitated Charity Hospital. State officials mothballed the downtown hospital by the end of September 2005.

This important set of facts crops up as well:

The lost and damaged records in Clerk of Court Dale Atkins' office, which make it impossible to complete title searches, has delayed the purchase or expropriation of at least 124 of the 244 parcels on the Mid-City footprint that is slated to become University Medical Center. As of last week, the state owned or controlled 108 individual properties.

This scenario puts the demolitions in the UMC Footprint in some context: they increasingly look like an attempt to convey the impression that the project is well underway and irreversible...when in fact, there are a whole host of uncertainties and obstacles that remain in place.

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