This week, The Lens, New Orleans’ investigative newsroom, has the latest on developments at HANO, the Housing Authority of New Orleans. The state-chartered agency runs publicly subsidized housing in the city, and serves up to 17,000 New Orleans families. It has been under control of the federal department of Housing and Urban Development, or HUD, for abut 17 years.
The Housing Authority of New Orleans received a Federal grant last year to redevelop the Iberville Housing Development, the city’s last traditional public housing complex, on the edge of the French Quarter. The plan was to keep about a third of the buildings, demolish the rest, and build new, mixed-income housing.
The Department of Veterans Affairs is giving $1 million to a nonprofit that helps homeless veterans in northeast Louisiana.
The funds will go to the Wellspring Alliance for Families Inc., a group based in Monroe that provides housing for homeless veterans.
U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., says the money comes from a VA program that seeks to help veterans who are in the most need of aid — such as women with children, those from American-Indian tribes and those with drug addiction and mental health problems.
Population studies show that New Orleans, more than many American cities, needs to plan for housing Baby Boomers as they get older. A new study warns that blight could worsen as properties become abandoned.
New Orleans has 43,000 blighted properties, more than any other American city. Fighting blight can be complex, But since Mayor Landrieu’s administration took office, there’s been an invigorated effort at easing the problem.
With little fanfare, a cluster of tidy new houses recently went on the market in the Lower 9th Ward, bringing a poorly executed experiment in post-disaster housing to inglorious resolution long delayed.
The 22 one- and two- bedroom houses are the last of the now-notorious “Katrina Cottages” that, almost seven years ago, were conceived as salvation for New Orleanians displaced by hurricanes Katrina and Rita and desperate to come home.