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The house that barbecue built Children’s Hospital’s new Hogs House Family Center opens on historic U.S. Marine Hospital campus BY Keith Marshall | ONE OF THE HISTORIC BUILDINGS on the former U.S. Ma- rine Hospital site Uptown is once again providing a healing space for families and patients — and it’s thanks in large part to New Orleans’ love of pulled pork and spicy ribs. With a nearly $2 million donation from Hogs for the Cause, the annual springtime barbecue festival that raises money for pediatric brain cancer, Children’s Hospital of New Orleans recently opened Hogs House Family Center, a residence for loved ones of patients undergoing treatment. The bright, airy facility is housed in a 1930s building that previously served as a garage and maintenance struc- ture for the Public Service Hospital, which operated on the site in the early 20th century. While the building’s Georgian Revival façade has been restored, there was little to preserve in the 7,800-square-foot interior, which gave architects from Eskew+Dumas+Ripple free rein inside. The Hogs House now features bedrooms, kitchen and dining facilities, cheerful rooms for socializing, and management areas. “There are 13 suites,” said Amanda Rivera, Eskew + Dumas + Ripple’s project manager. “We’ve been calling them sleeping rooms. We’ve prioritized more of the public areas as communal spaces, to promote interactions between families and hopefully create a community of support at the house.” Hogs House is part of the transformation and restoration of the oak-shaded campus of the former U.S. Marine Hospital. Located on Tchoupitoulas Street between Henry Clay Avenue, State Street and the Mississippi River, the 17-acre site was acquired by neighboring Children’s Hospital in 2014. Construction began in January 2018. Three historic buildings — the 1830s Overseer’s Cottage, the 1880s Director’s House and a cottage believed to have served as a kitchen on the site — also are being restored and adapted for new uses. Wherever possible, the alleys of live oaks, planted in 1943 by Pentagon landscape architect Albert D. Taylor, are being preserved. DECEMBER 2018 PHOTOS BY Liz Jurey Early in the planning, Children’s Hospital officials approached Hogs for the Cause founders Becker Hall and Rene Louapre with the idea of funding a room at the new facility. Hall and Louapre had bigger ideas. “We had heard wonderful things about what Target House was doing at St. Jude (Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis) in the same vein. We quickly said, ‘We don’t want a room. We want the whole thing,’ ” Hall said. The new Hogs House is the latest chapter in the long history of the Uptown hospital grounds. The site can trace its past own- ers back to New Orleans’ founder Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne, Sieur de Bienville, and later landowner Bernard de Marigny. Jean Etienne de Bore, the city’s first mayor, perfected the granulation of sugar in Louisiana on the site, which he operated as a successful plantation. There have been four U.S. Marine hospitals on the site, the most recent being the Public Service Hospital of the 1930s, when most www.prcno.org • PRESERVATION IN PRINT 39