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Rebuild New Orleans?

post #1 of 72
Thread Starter 
I am of the opinion that New Orleans should not be rebuilt to anything like it was before.

1) It will cost too much money.

Why should federal tax money subsidized a major city to be where it should not be? We shouldn't be spending money to allow cities to grow where nature never meant them to be. Like deserts and floodplains. If people move back in there, the property tax should be jacked up high enough to pay for the levees and an over built evacuation plan. This would price everyone out of the city which is exactly what market forces should do.

2) It puts too many people in danger.

Why were 1.2 million people in a bowl surrounded by water? Why weren't the hospitals ready for a total failure? In the calculation of potential loss of life the city of New Orleans should have come out as too costly long ago. Now we have a chance to manage the city and not allow so many people to put in danger again.



After they drain the city and clean up the bodies they need to demolish most of the damaged housing and not rebuild it. It's a big country. People can live somewhere else. Then they need to remodel the hospitals, fire/police departments and other vital sites to make them flood proof. Make it so every needed system in the building is above the flood line for the next 100 years. This should be paid for by the city or state. If they think it's worth it they should pay for it. If there is vital industry that contributes to the GDP then the federal government should help in the cost of rebuilding that.

I'm sure my opinion will be very unpopular.
post #2 of 72
They can raise the city by several feet on the lakeside.

I think that is what they should do.
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post #3 of 72
Thread Starter 
Maybe they should but the mud that the city is built on is kept dry. That's why the city is sinking. As the mud dries the city sinks more. It's a catch 22.
post #4 of 72
I have to agree with NO never again being any kind of picture of what it used to be. I understand and appreciate the historical value of the city and all that entails. You have to think, however, that because of ALL the factors involved in rebuilding on such a fragile site that maybe we should devote those resources to moving people elsewhere near, but out of harm's way.

The feds have done it before. I know of a couple of towns here in the midwest that FEMA has bought out because everytime there was flooding the town was underwater. It's a safety issue first, and a practicality issue closely after that. My sister-in-law and I went round and round about this the other day, but to me it just makes sense to thank New Orleans, as it existed, for all it gave us and move on.
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post #5 of 72
If the city is rebuild, something will have to be done, to prevent new dramas. Holland is built under sea, but they do not face this drama. Perhaps there is some teaching out there.

Now I am quite surprised, that some people are ready to give up New Orleans so easily. After the Twin Towers where hit badly, US people all agree that they shoud be rebuild. No one said that we should not build skycrapers anymore, because basket cases could strike it again.
New Orleans is belonging to the heritage and history of United States.


BTW that's just my opinion
post #6 of 72
Thread Starter 
I know a little bit about the Netherlands but not a lot. Is it a river delta like New Orleans? The geologic history of the Mississippi is flooding, mud, water and mud.
post #7 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by PBook12
I know a little bit about the Netherlands but not a lot. Is it a river delta like New Orleans? The geologic history of the Mississippi is flooding, mud, water and mud.

It's not delta, it's lands taken to the sea to expand the territory.
post #8 of 72
Thread Starter 
Then that's a different situation than New Orleans. Plus the Dutch do it because they need the land. We have plenty here. There's no need to live in a dry mud pit surrounded by water with no means of escape.
post #9 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by PBook12
Then that's a different situation than New Orleans. Plus the Dutch do it because they need the land. We have plenty here. There's no need to live in a dry mud pit surrounded by water with no means of escape.

Yes, but it would be a pity to erase New Orleans. This is a mythic town, one I would love to visit.
post #10 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by PBook12
I am of the opinion that New Orleans should not be rebuilt to anything like it was before.

1) It will cost too much money.

Why should federal tax money subsidized a major city to be where it should not be? We shouldn't be spending money to allow cities to grow where nature never meant them to be. Like deserts and floodplains. If people move back in there, the property tax should be jacked up high enough to pay for the levees and an over built evacuation plan. This would price everyone out of the city which is exactly what market forces should do..

every city has its own risk.

Las Vegas is in the middle of nowhere in the desert

the fact is, its going to be rebuilt whether you like it or not. people are not going to give up on it when it is still a viable and attractive location...and most importantly...their home.

earthquakes have devastated cities, especially San Francisco, they rebuilt. You rebuild smarter and with more planning. Strengthen the city. Also, while the majority of the city is pretty devastated there is a good portion that isn't. You can't ignore that
post #11 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by Bronxite
every city has its own risk.

Las Vegas is in the middle of nowhere in the desert

the fact is, its going to be rebuilt whether you like it or not. people are not going to give up on it when it is still a viable and attractive location...and most importantly...their home.

earthquakes have devastated cities, especially San Francisco, they rebuilt. You rebuild smarter and with more planning. Strengthen the city. Also, while the majority of the city is pretty devastated there is a good portion that isn't. You can't ignore that

I second that
post #12 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by PBook12
I am of the opinion that New Orleans should not be rebuilt to anything like it was before.

Well, I dunno...
By the same token, Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York would have to be relocated because they are endangered by earthquakes, floods or both. Together with Napels (Italy) and Tokyo (Japan).
post #13 of 72
I swear to God, why is it that I NEVER, EVER hear people after an earthquake in LA say "You know, they were stupid to build a city on a major fault line! It's too expensive to rebuild it!"

Why is that?
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post #14 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by Powerdoc
Holland is built under sea, but they do not face this drama. Perhaps there is some teaching out there.

With all due respect Powerdoc, Holland's not exactly in a hurricane zone.

With the way storms in the Caribbean have been acting up lately, the chance of this happening again could be quite high.
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post #15 of 72
1) Most scientists now agree that global warming is a probable fact.

2) Following that thought, sea levels are predicted to rise more quickly in the future, placing the city in even greater danger.

3) Due to flood control projects on the Mississippi River, the Delta is rapidly shrinking at the rate of 28,000 acres per year. This will ultimately leave the city with no protection from storm surges.

4) The existing levees are only engineered to protect the city from a Category 3 hurricane, improving them would costs billions of dollars.

5) The Red Cross decided several years ago to not set up hurricane shelters in New Orleans because of the danger even with improved levees.

6) We are facing the beginning of a 30 year upswing in the hurricane cycle.


Looks like an obvious decision to me.

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post #16 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by iPoster
6) We are facing the beginning of a 30 year upswing in the hurricane cycle.

26 year cycle, started in 1995 ends in 2021, we have 15 years left to go.

I remember because they talked about it alot when we got hit with Hurricane Fran in 1996.
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post #17 of 72
HOLY HELL! They'd better move NYC!
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post #18 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by midwinter
HOLY HELL! They'd better move NYC!

They will. Of course, NYC is still standing and NO is not, and NO is a good 40 feet lower than NYC.

If NYC was torn to the ground, and if it was 40 feet lower protected by levees, and if it was in a active hurricane zone, then yes, we would be talking about the same stuff.
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post #19 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by midwinter
HOLY HELL! They'd better move NYC!

Trust me - nothing at all will be done till the floodwaters are in the streets. Relief will take 5 days to get organized, and there will be plenty of fingerpointing from all sides at all levels.
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post #20 of 72
And in 2015, while America's costal cities begin to be engulfed by the sea, a member of the Republican administration will stand before the cameras and say:

"Of course we would have taken steps to avert this disaster, but honestly, nobody predicted that the oceans were going to rise this way."
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post #21 of 72
I think it will be rebuilt but wish some of the essential services be moved out and to the northwest and on higher ground.

reg
post #22 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by addabox
And in 2015, while America's costal cities begin to be engulfed by the sea, a member of the Republican administration will stand before the cameras and say:

"Of course we would have taken steps to avert this disaster, but honestly, nobody predicted that the oceans were going to rise this way."

Take a glass of water.

Put in some ice so that the ice is floating.

Mark the water line.

Leave the water and ice out over night so that the ice can melt.

Tell us how much the water level rose.

Back to the topic:

New Orleans: Venice Of The New World (the mosquitos notwithstanding....)

Lake Pontchartrain (SP?) looks to be about half the size of Rhode Island on a National Geographic map. That's a hell of a lot of water to hold back.....

V/R,

Aries 1B
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post #23 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by Aries 1B
Take a glass of water.

Put in some ice so that the ice is floating.

Mark the water line.

Leave the water and ice out over night so that the ice can melt.

Tell us how much the water level rose.

Back to the topic:

New Orleans: Venice Of The New World (the mosquitos notwithstanding....)

Lake Pontchartrain (SP?) looks to be about half the size of Rhode Island on a National Geographic map. That's a hell of a lot of water to hold back.....

V/R,

Aries 1B

Wow. You went out of your way for an ignorant non sequitur.

Put an ice cube on a ledge next to the glass. Allow the melt water to flow into the glass. See the amount of water in the glass increase.

Ice melt sea level change assumes the melting of land ice, not ice floating on the sea.

Warm the water up. See it expand.
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post #24 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by addabox
Ice melt sea level change assumes the melting of land ice, not ice floating on the sea.

Technically correct, but sea ice does have an effect on climate:

Quote:
The amount of sea ice does not directly affect the sea level, not because sea ice generally is less a metre thick, but rather because it is floating. Indirectly, it does affect the sea level, through its effect on global temperatures. Its high albedo, compared with that of open water, leads to a positive temperature feedback as a result of solar heating. It inhibits the loss of heat from the ocean to the atmosphere, and therefore it enhances the continentality of adjacent coastal areas. The formation of ice causes an increase of salinity in the adjacent water, since the ice formation excludes most of the salt. The increased salinity means a higher density, which fosters thermohaline subsidence of the water beneath the ice. Conversely, melting of the ice in summer leaves a layer of relatively low-density water on the sea surface.

The area of sea ice appears to be falling around the Arctic (1), but around Antarctica only in the Amundsen & Bellingshausen Sea (since 1973) (3). Gaps of open water within an area of sea ice are known as ?polynyas?. There is substantial heat loss from polynyas to the atmosphere, and consequent subsidence of the cooled water.
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post #25 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by Frank777
With all due respect Powerdoc, Holland's not exactly in a hurricane zone.

With the way storms in the Caribbean have been acting up lately, the chance of this happening again could be quite high.

Stronger water protection, should prevent the flooding again. BTW there is no way of preventing the impact of the wind.
If you take hurricanes in consideration, a big part of the south is doomed.
post #26 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by Frank777
With all due respect Powerdoc, Holland's not exactly in a hurricane zone.

With the way storms in the Caribbean have been acting up lately, the chance of this happening again could be quite high.

Holland has a huge investment into its protection infrastructure relative to what the New Orleans area has. And you are correct, hurricanes (as in warm core tropical systems) do not affect Holland, but they do have a serious winter storm potential problem: The North Sea is shaped like a funnel, with a wide mouth in the north and a narrow neck towards the English Channel. If an exceptionally vigorous depression moves southeast across the eastern North Sea pulling in hurricane strength northwest to northerly winds behind it, combined with an exceptional high tide, this can cause the southern end of the North Sea to 'pile up' and top the dykes of Holland and the Fens district of East Anglia in the UK. This scenario happened in the winter of 1952 and two thousand people in Holland and England were killed by the floods, and it wasnt the worst version of what can happen in this weather situation.
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post #27 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by Aries 1B
Take a glass of water.

Put in some ice so that the ice is floating.

Aries - fresh water ice melting in sea water raises the level slightly (your example is fresh/fresh). Most importantly, the land based ice is significant.

Total sea rise will be 270 feet if we melt everything. My house sits at 270 feet above sea level, so it will be beach property (+/- 30 feet from the crappy GPS, unfortunately).

This is not some abstract point that people normally disagree with.
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post #28 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by Powerdoc
It's not delta, it's lands taken to the sea to expand the territory.

Actually it is both: Holland is a delta of the Rhine and Maas rivers in which a lot of wet parts and lakes are diked in and pumped dry. See this article in the NY times (free registration required)
post #29 of 72
To me, it's all well and good to say "every city has it's problems, so if we abandon N.O. then we should abandon all the others." The fact of THIS situation is that New Orleans' "grandfather clause" wore out. Now a decision has to be made. Obviously it's going to be rebuilt, but I think based on everything we know it's really a terrible idea.

I just hope and pray that 30 or 40 years from now I don't have to see headlines saying, "New Orleans Again Destroyed: Thousands feared dead. Storm has eerie resemblence to 2005's Katrina."
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post #30 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by CosmoNut
To me, it's all well and good to say "every city has it's problems, so if we abandon N.O. then we should abandon all the others." The fact of THIS situation is that New Orleans' "grandfather clause" wore out. Now a decision has to be made. Obviously it's going to be rebuilt, but I think based on everything we know it's really a terrible idea.

I just hope and pray that 30 or 40 years from now I don't have to see headlines saying, "New Orleans Again Destroyed: Thousands feared dead. Storm has eerie resemblence to 2005's Katrina."

Hmm, they should have made the levees stronger and higher. That's not me who said this, but US expert in the fields.
I will not understand that US is able to spent billions dollars in an almost never ending war, and will not be able to fix the Levee between NO and the Pontchartain's lake.

PS the expert in the field is Jonh Rennie from the famous scientifical magazine : Scientific American. He predicated this issue in 2001.
post #31 of 72
why not make a new orleans replica somewhere nearby but in a safer place? they could keep the compact pattern and perhaps correct some glaring mistakes that may have existed. that would be a very american thing to do, i think, and i don't think there is anything wrong with that. plus, it would be a chance to come back from a disaster with a practical, unique, only-one-in-the-world solution. how much does it cost to build a city?
post #32 of 72
Thread Starter 
Kind of like how Las Vegas does it?
post #33 of 72
Um, look, they're going to rebuild the city.

They're going to build new, stronger levees. Some part of the city will have to be raised, such as the Ninth Ward.

But to suggest that the city shouldn't be rebuilt that's like telling someone who lost and arm or a leg, that they can't get medical care and should just go die quietly.

Yes, it might have helped if the Bush Administration hadn't cut spending for levee repair of if the Clinton, Bush, or Reagan Administrations had taken the dire and accurate predictions seriously.

There's probably 5,000-10,000 people now dead because of politics as usual.

We don't need to leave New Orleans for dead. We do need a new political process that puts people first, though.
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post #34 of 72
Thread Starter 
Go ahead and rebuild if they want. Just make so the city code requires every structure to be ready for a flood and that every new building permit requires people to come under the new tax system that is 100x what is it now to pay for all this.
post #35 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by PBook12
Go ahead and rebuild if they want. Just make so the city code requires every structure to be ready for a flood and that every new building permit requires people to come under the new tax system that is 100x what is it now to pay for all this.



As an aside, it has just occurred to me that thus far the Bush PR pushback has been in two phases:

1) Shift blame to the locals
2) Emphasize that red tape and beaurocracy were the real villains here.

Step 3 will likely be "Small gummit!"
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post #36 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by midwinter


As an aside, it has just occurred to me that thus far the Bush PR pushback has been in two phases:

1) Shift blame to the locals
2) Emphasize that red tape and beaurocracy were the real villains here.

Step 3 will likely be "Small gummit!"

Even if some blame go to the locals, that will not excuse the two days of immobilism of the federal governement. Coming from the only superpower of the planet, and not a third rate countrie, this is really unbelievable.

The weakness of the protections of NO, and in particular the levee and waterpumps where a well known fact.

One terrible thing in our modern countrie, is that when security recquiere large investissement, and is not limited to the typing of a memo, we wait disasters, to make things happen.


In resume we can say that there is two things to consider in the prevention of this disaster :

- the lack of prevention (a result of three decades of relative inaction)
- the management of the crisis, with at least two days of inaction.

The responsabilities of the first and second point differ, but are real.
post #37 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by Powerdoc
In resume we can say that there is two things to consider in the prevention of this disaster :

- the lack of prevention (a result of three decades of relative inaction)
- the management of the crisis, with at least two days of inaction.

The responsabilities of the first and second point differ, but are real.

What I'm wondering is how long it will be before Michael Brown 'takes one for the team'. He deserves to be canned anyway, I give it less than 4 weeks before the Bushites decide he is too much of a liability to be backed up by the Admin like he is now.

They are already spinning the 'FEMA was working right, the problem is at the State and Local level' story in an AP wire with no byline in today's paper, that talked about all the awesome things FEMA did to help after Katrina.


Has anyone at FEMA or DHS actually READ the National Response Plan??


The biggest thing I regret about this so far is not setting up a video tape to record the news when the storm hit and immediately following, to see how the news changes in the coming days. Hello post-9/11 spin all over again.
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post #38 of 72
Quote:
Originally posted by iPoster
What I'm wondering is how long it will be before Michael Brown 'takes one for the team'. He deserves to be canned anyway, I give it less than 4 weeks before the Bushites decide he is too much of a liability to be backed up by the Admin like he is now.

They are already spinning the 'FEMA was working right, the problem is at the State and Local level' story in an AP wire with no byline in today's paper, that talked about all the awesome things FEMA did to help after Katrina.


Has anyone at FEMA or DHS actually READ the National Response Plan??


The biggest thing I regret about this so far is not setting up a video tape to record the news when the storm hit and immediately following, to see how the news changes in the coming days. Hello post-9/11 spin all over again.

They would try to spin, but this time it won't work. This time it's not US versus a rogue dictatorship nation. It's the management of an internal crisis. It's not also a question of politic color. A management of such a crisis is a question of decisions : no dogma here, no left no right.
post #39 of 72
Thread Starter 
The spin started when it was concluded that the only blame could be placed on FEMA/Bush. The fact that the Mayor delayed the evac order because of libaility reasons is not dealt with. The fact that the evac plan was criminally unrealistic is not dealt with. The fact that the Governor was not ready with the National Guard for the aftermath is not dealt with. The fact that the city building codes allowed every vital service to be disabled in a flood is not dealt with.

Anyone that wants to figure out the root cause of this disaster needs to put politics aside and start at the ground level. Why was the city not ready? Why was the state not ready? Why was the country not ready?

I know Bush is unpopular but if we believe the arm chair analysis here, all we need to do is wait out Bush, elect a new person and ... the core problem is solved. Which of course it isn't.
post #40 of 72
National Gaurd in a state of war are under the command of the pentagon.
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