A 97-year-old former elementary school in St. Roch would be converted into affordable housing under a plan unanimously approved by the New Orleans City Planning Commission this week. The proposal would convert the school building at 2515 N. Robertson — originally named the Charles E. Gayarre Elementary and later changed to Oretha Castle Haley Elementary — into 33 units of affordable housing for residents over the age of 55.

The building has been vacant since Hurricane Katrina and was auctioned off by the Orleans Parish School Board in 2013. The Preservation Resource Center advocated to save the building from demolition in 2016. It became a local historic landmark in 2017.

Former Oretha Castle Haley School, located at 2515 North Robertson Street

Built in 1921, the Mediterranean Revival-style building was designed by the prolific school architect, E. A Christy.