In this Book

My Storm
summary

Edward J. Blakely has been called upon to help rebuild after some of the worst disasters in recent American history, from the San Francisco Bay Area's 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake to the September 11 attacks in New York. Yet none of these jobs compared to the challenges he faced in his appointment by New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin as Director of the Office of Recovery and Development Administration following Hurricane Katrina.

In Katrina's wake, New Orleans and the Gulf Coast suffered a disaster of enormous proportions. Millions of pounds of water crushed the basic infrastructure of the city. A land area six times the size of Manhattan was flooded, destroying 200,000 homes and leaving most of New Orleans under water for 57 days. No American city had sustained that amount of destruction since the Civil War. But beneath the statistics lies a deeper truth: New Orleans had been in trouble well before the first levee broke, plagued with a declining population, crumbling infrastructure, ineffective government, and a failed school system. Katrina only made these existing problems worse. To Blakely, the challenge was not only to repair physical damage but also to reshape a city with a broken economy and a racially divided, socially fractured community.

My Storm is a firsthand account of a critical sixteen months in the post-Katrina recovery process. It tells the story of Blakely's endeavor to transform the shell of a cherished American city into a city that could not only survive but thrive. He considers the recovery effort's successes and failures, candidly assessing the challenges at hand and the work done—admitting that he sometimes stumbled, especially in managing press relations. For Blakely, the story of the post-Katrina recovery contains lessons for all current and would-be planners and policy makers. It is, perhaps, a cautionary tale.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. restricted access Download |
  1. Contents
  2. pp. vii-viii
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Foreword
  2. pp. ix-x
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Introduction
  2. pp. 3-7
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. PART I. SEEING THE PROBLEM
  2. p. 9
  1. 1. An Alarming View from Down Under
  2. pp. 11-15
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 2. Getting to New Orleans
  2. pp. 16-23
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 3. A Harbinger of Problems to Come
  2. pp. 24-33
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 4. “Fix It!”
  2. pp. 34-39
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. PART II. WHERE TO FROM HERE?
  2. p. 41
  1. 5. Imagining a Future Out of Mud: A Recovery Plan
  2. pp. 43-54
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 6. Inside the Mayor’s “Cocoon”
  2. pp. 55-63
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 7. Putting My Team on the Field: Recovery Administration
  2. pp. 64-75
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 8. Politics and Money
  2. pp. 76-88
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 9. Reviving a Drowning Economy
  2. pp. 89-98
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. PART III. ELEMENTS OF THE CITY
  2. p. 99
  1. 10. In Search of Civic Leadership
  2. pp. 101-106
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 11. More Than Bricks and Sticks: Reviving Neighborhoods
  2. pp. 107-114
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 12. The Race Cards of Recovery
  2. pp. 115-121
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 13. A Medium Off Message
  2. pp. 122-126
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 14. Levees and FEMA: The Real Hazards for New Orleans
  2. pp. 127-134
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. PART IV. ASSESSING THE RECOVERY
  2. p. 135
  1. 15. Chance to Assess the Recovery
  2. pp. 137-143
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. 16. The “Big Easy,” Nothing Comes Easy, Not Even Leaving
  2. pp. 144-151
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Chapter Notes
  2. pp. 153-160
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Appendix: Memorandum of Understanding
  2. pp. 161-176
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Index
  2. pp. 177-182
  3. restricted access Download |
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.