It's Official: New Orleans Will Never Be the Same

By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 24, 2009 1:21 PM CDT
The 17th Street Canal in Metarie, La., showing repairs made since Katrina.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Even if the government somehow managed to re-create pre-Katrina New Orleans, it couldn't guarantee the safety of the city and its residents, according to a new report. The Army Corps of Engineers is rebuilding levees in anticipation of a “100-year storm,” but for a city of New Orleans’ size nothing is truly sufficient, the Times-Picayune reports. The report recommends relocating people living in at-risk areas.

“Reconstructing all pre-Katrina protective structures, and creating settlement patterns just as they existed before Katrina, simply would position the city and its inhabitants for additional, Katrina-like disasters,” the report warns. For residents who can’t be moved, the committee recommends a tactic used by the city’s early residents: “Add an extra floor in building plans so that floor is expendable in a flood event.” (Read more New Orleans stories.)