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Rebuilding the City

 

 

 

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First, there were meetings.  Then more meetings.  Then still more meetings.  The federal government refused to give Louisiana any money until the state came up with a plan known as the Unified New Orleans Plan.  The road to getting there was paved with political wrangling, backroom deal making, and lots of conversation. It all began with the Mayor’s Bring New Orleans Back Commission.

 

 

 

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Development, included aid for small rental property owners, but those funds weren’t made available until early 2008.  By then, many small property owners, worn out by the bureaucracy, had given up.

Total number of rental units lost during Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans:  82,000
Number being rebuilt as of Dec. 2008 with rebuilding funds:  22,918
Number of small landlords eligible to receive assistance rebuilding their property:  10,000
Number completed so far:  82

Despite statistics showing that the population of New Orleans had reached three-quarters of its pre-Katrina population by late 2008, the graphs above from the Brookings Institution Katrina Index reveal those moving into the city are wealthier than those who left.

 

 

 

The Brookings Institiution
METROPOLITAN POLICY PROGRAM

Resettling New Orleans: The First Full Picture from the Census

Download the PDF here.

 

 

 

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Gale Gettridge Branon explains why so few small landlords apply for the federal money available to help them rebuild.  The result – fewer places for renters to live.

 

How has cost of living affected your decision to move/not move back to Louisiana? 

If you now live outside of New Orleans, what's it like getting adjusted to a new place?

 

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This is just plain funny. And it’s a testament to how New Orleanians have coped with the Kafkaesque situation in which they’ve found themselves in since 2005.

 

What jokes did your family use to cope with the stgrees ? 

 

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Don Powell, former Federal Coordinator for Gulf Coast Rebuilding, talks about how it is local and state government’s responsibility to create incentive for insurers to provide coverage in the region. Competitive insurance rates will allow developers to take advantage of the Gulf Opportunity (GO) Zone, the federal government’s program of tax credits for large-scale development projects.

 

How could the federal government have handled the rebuilding effort differently? 

 

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Under a program called the Gulf Opportunity (GO) Zone, the federal government has provided developers with generous tax credits as a way to encourage development. But New Orleans real estate developer Pres Kabacoff talks about how developers can’t get their projects off the ground because they can’t get insurance coverage.

 

What role are developers playing in the rebuilding effort? 

 

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Shirley Gettridge Armstrong and her husband, Peter Armstrong, evacuated three days before Katrina hit -— and never went back.

 

How have your older relatives been affected by the displacement??
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Sean Reilly, board member of the Louisiana Recovery Authority, explains how changes in insurance coverage are having a major impact on the ability of the Gulf Coast region to bounce back.

 

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We think this scene of Ronald Gettridge trying to connect the gas line under his house neatly epitomizes the entire rebuilding process:  the hope, trepidation, dismay, and disgust that filled each homeowner is summed up perfectly.

 

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Comments (1)Add Comment
michelle
michelle
August 20, 2010
66.114.65.17
...

5th Anniversary and more work still needs to be done.

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