Saturday, November 03, 2007

An Update on the Projects

Last month there was a lot of chatter about HANO's decision to demolish four large public housing projects here in New Orleans. We talked about design principles, resident rights, and corruption at governmental agencies that oversee public housing. Check out this post by m.d. filter that got the ball rolling. And this one by pistolette. And I put together one, two, three pieces here.

I argued for long term public housing redevelopment based on some new urbanist design principles discussed under link one above. However I argued against immediate demolition of the four complexes currently facing the wrecking ball because I did not believe that HUD and HANO should be trusted to have properly vetted redevelopment alternatives or provided sufficient evidence that they were adequately reaching out to displaced persons in need of housing aid. (since the projects slated for demolition are structurally sound and can be reopened for residency)

I still believe that.

From Satuday's Times-Picayune:

HANO hasn't made good on that promise in the past, said attorneys for the Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center, who returned once again to federal court over availability of homes at River Garden, the neighborhood that replaced the St. Thomas development.

HANO is failing to provide housing advocates with accurate contact information for former St. Thomas residents, violating an agreement struck in June, said attorney James Perry.

Of the 1,132 addresses of former residents HANO provided, 38 percent stated that the families still lived at St. Thomas, which was demolished in 2001. An additional 20 percent of the contact list states that families live in developments that have been vacant for two years, Perry said.

The inaccuracies call into question HANO's claims that it has plenty of open units that its families either can't or won't return to post-Katrina, Perry said.

HANO maintains it has 400 apartments in its developments ready and waiting until its families can return to New Orleans from cities such as Houston, but the agency hasn't provided a list of addresses for each unit, despite a request by U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La.

I added that emphasis. I also emphasize that HANO should release the addresses for the units it claims are vacant and waiting for families. Why continue to cast doubt on the credibility of your organization's statements and intentions?


Karen said...
check out these little bits of cancer

E said...

Karen, might those dillapidated properties be the mystery ones that HANO says it can't fill?