Thursday, January 12, 2006

Bring New Orleans Back: The Report

Alright, first of all - at least it's a plan.

Sort of.

Effectively the main thrust of the entire BNOB Commission's plan is to wait four months and see what happens. Besides halting the permitting process on re-building in the most damaged neighborhoods, they spell out that during these four wait and see months, each of these damaged neighborhoods must hold several meetings in order to determine the extent to which homeowners are seeking to return.

Ok, that's fine, but I have several questions regarding the accuracy and precision of this information that they expect to garner in these meetings, as anyone can go into one of these events and scream to the top of their lungs that they are planning to return.

In fact, the report itself does not explain at all how these statistics are to be compiled.

What are they going to do, a show of hands? Where's the proof that these residents will return or even have the financial ability to return? Basically, they're going to let everyone feel that they are part of the process, and even though the Commission will be listening a little bit, I do think they're going to end up making some hard choices that are going to piss a lot of people off... read that as black people.

Unfortunately though - we're going to have to make hard choices to ensure the sustainability of this city.

Look, there are also definately some good ideas in the plan. I'm in favor of expanding streetcars and the light rail, the added greenspace and bike trails and the obvious necessity to shrink the city's footprint just for the sake of providing city services.

However, what this plan is actually doing is holding everyone off for two things - the new FEMA flood maps (which are due out in about four months) and to see what form of the Baker Bill passes through congress.

It's the stall for time plan... but like I said at the outset of this post, at least it's a plan.

You can download the entire BNOBC Plan for rebuilding the city in .pdf here. 34mb.


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