Approximately 16 students from LSU’s Interior Design class will take part in a restoration study of the downtown area of Thibodaux beginning Saturday, September 14. Thibodaux was selected last spring by the Louisiana Main Street Program to participate in the project, which is worth approximately $100,000 to the community. The service project will engage Interior Design students in hands-on, pre-professional experience to develop a revitalization promotion package for the City of Thibodaux. “The City is very fortunate to be chosen by the state for this project. The benefits to the city far outweigh the local cost to the city of approximately $3,500 and will greatly enhance and prepare us for future restoration projects in the downtown Thibodaux…resulting in a direct benefit to the entire community,” said Mayor Caillouet.
The students will survey, document and evaluate West Third Street from the Courthouse to Jackson Street. The students will be working with local businesses and owners to measure facades and interiors, take photographs and eventually produce conceptual drawings in Photoshop showing how the exteriors of buildings could appear if rehabilitated using Main Street design guidelines. The students will also make schematic drawings of appropriate interior treatments for buildings chosen by the students with the assistance of local business owners and prepare a Power Point presentation on CD-Rom for use by local property owners and Thibodaux Main Street.
The Thibodaux Main Street Board is spearheading the project. Together the Main Street Board and Professor Leon Steele, LSU Assistant Professor of Interior Design, will guide the students on a tour of downtown on Saturday morning to meet with various downtown businesses and begin their various studies. Professor Steele received the LSU Service-Learning Faculty Award in 2002 for his role in the production of a comprehensive plan for the restoration of the historical district of Bogalusa. The final product will be presented at an opening reception in the atrium of the Design Building at LSU at the end of the Spring 2003 semester. Afterwards, the entire package will be turned over to Thibodaux, where it will also be locally exhibited.