Preservationists sue over hospital plans

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - A preservation group is suing the federal government, claiming it failed to adequately assess the effect of building two new hospitals in New Orleans' Mid-City neighborhood.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation wants a federal judge keep the government from moving ahead with the plans until a more thorough review is done.

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and Federal Emergency Management Agency are named as defendants.

The VA in November announced plans to build in Mid City, and the city was given a year to secure the necessary land. The state has yet to fully secure the $1.2 billion expected for a teaching hospital that would be nearby and replace the Hurricane Katrina-shuttered Charity Hospital. But it plans to use FEMA funds.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)