Officials in New Orleans have released a scaled-back version of the recovery plan the city council approved earlier this spring. This lighter version of the plan focuses on removing blight, and building affordable apartments.
The blueprint being released Friday by city Recovery Director Ed Blakely is far more modest than the one he issued in March. But he said it will at least get the rebuilding started and give the public desperately needed signs of progress - which, in turn, will encourage private investment in New Orleans. "Plans help you make progress," Blakely said.
The plan - the general outlines of which were approved by the City Council earlier this year - is not the radical remaking of the city urged by some urban planners who wanted to see a New Orleans with a much smaller footprint, and with people moved out of flood-prone areas.
Instead, it largely embraces Mayor Ray Nagin's settle-where-you-will philosophy, while also endorsing the removal of blight and the creation of parks, affordable apartments and vibrant communities.