Rebuilding Public Housing Post-Disaster


  • Opportunities and challenges that public housing authorities face in the wake of a major disaster

  • Best practices and lessons learned from rebuilding public housing after Superstorm Sandy and Hurricane Katrina

  • Roles and responsibilities of various government agencies and nonprofit organizations in the disaster-recovery effort


Hurricane Katrina wreaked havoc on the Gulf Coast in 2005, damaging 134,000 homes and displacing 400,000 people in the City of New Orleans alone. With over $100 billion in damage, Katrina was the costliest hurricane in U.S. history. In 2012, Superstorm Sandy became the second costliest hurricane in U.S. history, causing more than $70 billion in destruction and damaging more than 100,000 homes on Long Island and more than 69,000 homes in New York City. In major disasters like Katrina and Sandy, the poorest and most vulnerable populations are often the hardest hit.

This session examines the impacts of Katrina and Sandy on public housing communities in New Orleans, New York City, and Long Island; it also presents the complex challenges and opportunities that come from working with low-income communities and public housing authorities in the wake of a disaster. This sessin focuses on Enterprise Community Partners’ role in the successful redevelopment of the New Orleans Faubourg Lafitte community, the New York City Housing Authority’s innovative retrofit of Brooklyn’s Red Hook Houses, and the New York State Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery’s pilot project to relocate the Moxey A. Rigby Apartments in Freeport, NY.