New Orleans extends demolition window

19 March 2008

The office of the Mayor of New Orleans, Ray Nagin, has announced that the date by which applications for free demolition of Katrina–damaged building has been extended to 29th August, 2007. This is three months later than initially announced, and applies to both residential and commercial properties in Orleans parish whose owners cannot afford to pay for the demolition work.

As a result, the demolition work carried out in the region by the Army Corp of Engineers on behalf of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is likely to continue to the end of the year. It can take as long as three months to process an application and for the demolition work to be carried out.

The ACE has carried out 3,386 demolitions to date, with another 138 currently going through the application process. The maximum number demolished by private contractors is estimated at 4,500.

A survey shortly after Katrina estimated that 15,000 building would need to be demolished, meaning that there could be several thousand more buildings that require removal.

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