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In Pictures: New Orleans' lingering blight
Nine years after Hurricane Katrina devastated the US' Gulf Coast, New Orleans still struggles to recover.
Last updated: 28 Aug 2014 21:17
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New Orleans, United States - August 28 marks nine years since Hurricane Katrina made landfall in the United States. As one of the most deadly storms recorded in US history, more than 1,800 people died in the storm and the subsequent flooding.

The hurricane devasted New Orleans, the largest city in the state of Louisiana. Although many neighbourhoods in New Orleans bounced back after Hurricane Katrina, others, like the Lower 9th, continue to show signs of neglect.

Many homes remain abandoned. The mostly poor, black neighbourhoods lack grocery stores, drug stores and banks. Only a fraction of the former residents have returned, and there seems little will to rebuild what was once vibrant communities.

The Lower 9th Village community centre opened its doors to residents in need two years after Hurricane Katrina. But the centre and operator, Ward "Mack" McLendon, who relies on donations to keep the facility open, faces forclosure. Sponsors' promises to help pay off the building and make it operational fell through. 

The community centre's plight symbolises the neighbourhood's lingering problems. However, the residents remain resilient, and the community has initiated revitalisation projects.

Just a few blocks from the Lower 9th Village community centre, the government has begun building another multi-million dollar community centre.

On that same street, a new structure lays on top of the destroyed Mount Nebo Bible Baptist Church.

While raising funds and gathering proper support proves difficult, Reverend Charles Duplessis says the migration of return has slowly started. "How do you build a community again? By giving them hope and by somebody standing up and saying we can do this if we come together. And I see that in the Lower 9th Ward."


/Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera

The Lower Ninth Ward Village community centre opened its doors in 2007 two years after Katrina. The centre faces forclosure due to a lack of funding.†



/Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera

Ward "Mack" McLendon opened the facility in 2007 and relies on donations to keep it open. He compares the situation in the Lower 9th Ward to that of many underdeveloped countries, saying the poverty remains rooted because of too much greed. "We have a problem here. But itís not a Lower 9th Ward problem. This is an America problem."



/Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera

Volunteers like Chika Kondo play a key role at the community centre. Chika moved to New Orleans from Berkeley, California, and developed a strong attachment to the city, and the Lower 9th Ward in particular.



/Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera

The Truck Stop Skate Park opened two years ago to great fanfare. Corporate sponsors and a well-known musician gave their support, and things looked promising within the Lower Ninth Ward Village.



/Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera

Although the skate park closed its doors, a group of skaters and community activists dropped by to show some moves and share some insight.



/Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera

Corey Dennis lives nearby in Lafayette, and attended the park's grand opening. He expresses disappointment that the facility feels abandoned, and spoke about the positive role the skating community plays in bringing people together.



/Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera

Not far from the community centre, haunting images of destroyed houses from the deadly storm. New homes being erected alongside abandoned ones often have lowered property values.



/Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera

Signs of submerged blocks during Karina still show all over the Lower 9th Ward.



/Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera

Families living in this neighbourhood had to leave everything behind when Katrina made landfall.



/Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera

Although the Lower 9th Ward had the highest rate of home ownership in New Orleans before the storm, only a fraction of the neighbourhood's original residents have returned.†



/Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera

Reverend Charles Duplessis is rebuilding his church, which was lost during the storm. "Our hope is that people will see what we are doing and despite what everybody else is saying, they see us not struggling, but doing what we need to do in order to make our community a better community," he told Al Jazeera.



/Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera

When complete, the new church can seat up to 200 congregants. Reverend Duplessis currently has 49 followers who attend mass at his home in the Lower 9th Ward. Before the storm, his congregation stood at nearly 150.



/Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera

Just up the street from the church site, a new community centre takes shape. The city funded the multi-million dollar project.



/Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera

The construction site lies adjacent to a block that contains an empty plot of land, a solar-powered house, and a gutted abandoned home.†




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images:
/mritems/images/2014/6/4/201464123116765491_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/6/4/201464123116900591_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/6/4/20146412311772326_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/6/4/201464123117199572_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/6/4/201464123117334130_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/6/4/201464123117467953_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/6/4/201464123117601395_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/6/4/201464123117763692_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/6/4/201464123117901693_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/6/4/20146412311823400_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/6/4/201464123118153616_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/6/4/201464123118276925_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/6/4/201464123118401409_8.jpg;*;/mritems/images/2014/6/4/201464123118527157_8.jpg
captions:

The Lower Ninth Ward Village community centre opened its doors in 2007 two years after Katrina. The centre faces forclosure due to a lack of funding.†

;*;

Ward "Mack" McLendon opened the facility in 2007 and relies on donations to keep it open. He compares the situation in the Lower 9th Ward to that of many underdeveloped countries, saying the poverty remains rooted because of too much greed. "We have a problem here. But itís not a Lower 9th Ward problem. This is an America problem."

;*;

Volunteers like Chika Kondo play a key role at the community centre. Chika moved to New Orleans from Berkeley, California, and developed a strong attachment to the city, and the Lower 9th Ward in particular.

;*;

The Truck Stop Skate Park opened two years ago to great fanfare. Corporate sponsors and a well-known musician gave their support, and things looked promising within the Lower Ninth Ward Village.

;*;

Although the skate park closed its doors, a group of skaters and community activists dropped by to show some moves and share some insight.

;*;

Corey Dennis lives nearby in Lafayette, and attended the park(***)s grand opening. He expresses disappointment that the facility feels abandoned, and spoke about the positive role the skating community plays in bringing people together.

;*;

Not far from the community centre, haunting images of destroyed houses from the deadly storm. New homes being erected alongside abandoned ones often have lowered property values.

;*;

Signs of submerged blocks during Karina still show all over the Lower 9th Ward.

;*;

Families living in this neighbourhood had to leave everything behind when Katrina made landfall.

;*;

Although the Lower 9th Ward had the highest rate of home ownership in New Orleans before the storm, only a fraction of the neighbourhood(***)s original residents have returned.†

;*;

Reverend Charles Duplessis is rebuilding his church, which was lost during the storm. "Our hope is that people will see what we are doing and despite what everybody else is saying, they see us not struggling, but doing what we need to do in order to make our community a better community," he told Al Jazeera.

;*;

When complete, the new church can seat up to 200 congregants. Reverend Duplessis currently has 49 followers who attend mass at his home in the Lower 9th Ward. Before the storm, his congregation stood at nearly 150.

;*;

Just up the street from the church site, a new community centre takes shape. The city funded the multi-million dollar project.

;*;

The construction site lies adjacent to a block that contains an empty plot of land, a solar-powered house, and a gutted abandoned home.†

Daylife ID:
d8ae5e52956cf6677b584e7f2ccde287
Photographer:
;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;
Image Source:
Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera;*;Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera;*;Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera;*;Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera;*;Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera;*;Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera;*;Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera;*;Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera;*;Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera;*;Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera;*;Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera;*;Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera;*;Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera;*;Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera;*;Karim Haddad/Al Jazeera
Gallery Source:
Daylife
Daylife Raw Data:
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