Shutting the Door to Public Housing in New Orleans?

Hosted by

More than two years after Katrina, public housing in New Orleans has become an issue on Capitol Hill and in the presidential campaign. Despite a shortage of low-income housing, the federal government wants to destroy thousands of apartments in New Orleans' four biggest public housing projects.  Some former residents say they'll be glad to have newer, safer places to live, but a tent-city full of protesters has sprung up across from City Hall. They insist that some of the buildings could be saved, along with social networks and the mostly African-American culture that has made New Orleans unique and important. With a shortage of places for low-income people to live, should public housing projects be restored or destroyed to make way for mixed-income developments? Would it mean better living for poor people or the loss of neighborhoods, social networks and the culture that's made the city unique? Is there an underlying effort to make New Orleans a smaller -- and whiter -- city?



  • Gwen Filosa - Staff writer, Times-Picayune
  • James Perry - Executive Director, Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center
  • April Carter - Manager, Starbucks in Harrah's New Orleans Casino
  • Samuel Jackson - Resident, B.W. Cooper Housing Project
  • Donald Babers - Board Chair, Housing Authority of New Orleans
  • Ivan Miestchovich - Director, University of New Orleans' Center for Economic Development


Warren Olney