City of New Orleans: Housing for a Resilient New Orleans

National Resource Network New Orleans, Louisiana June 17, 2016 Community Development + Housing

In April 2016, the City of New Orleans, Louisiana, reached out to the National Resource Network via our now defunct 311 for Cities feature.* The City of New Orleans sought advice establishing an affordable housing plan; the Network elevated the 311 request to a light engagement, which resulted in the attached Housing for a Resilient New Orleans plan.

People have flocked to the New Orleans as it has recovered from Katrina, but rising demand and job growth has led housing costs to increase by 50 percent since 2000. Due to a broader loss of income-affordable rental units along with low-wage jobs and inadequate public transit, many New Orleanians pay more than 50 percent of their income just on housing costs.

Housing for a Resilient New Orleans presents an integrated housing framework that harnesses the growing strength of the local economy and confronts the challenge of providing affordable housing choices for all New Orleans residents. It is a deliberate approach with new policies and tools that will address both new and long-standing challenges so everyone can participate in the City’s growing prosperity.

This strategy transforms a broad vision into clear actions that will result in a more resilient New Orleans with vibrant neighborhoods and more affordable housing. These actions are guided by the following core principles:

  • Equity Housing for a Resilient New Orleans recognizes the important role affordable housing plays in promoting equity, and the overall importance of helping low- and moderate-income New Orleanians build financial stability and live in thriving communities with linkages to jobs and transportation.
  • Collaboration Housing for a Resilient New Orleans acknowledges that the City alone cannot meet the growing need for affordable housing in New Orleans. The City will need support from committed local, state, and federal partners, especially between the City, NORA, and the Housing Authority of New Orleans (HANO).
  • Openness Housing for a Resilient New Orleans seeks to create transparent accountability for City-led initiatives by connecting proposed activities to the City’s broader performance management system called ResultsNOLA. It will be here where residents can track the City’s progress toward meeting its housing-related goals.

Through Housing for a Resilient New Orleans, the City plans to build or preserve 7,500 affordable housing units by 2021 (4,000 units by 2018 and another 3,500 units by 2021) and 6,125 additional families will receive rental assistance by 2021. This work will be accomplished through four complementary goals:

  1. Support development of new affordable rental and homeownership opportunities.
  2. Preserve affordability and improve quality of existing rental and homeownership opportunities.
  3. Expand access to opportunity and promote mobility by leveraging the Assessment of Fair Housing (AFH) process and other fair housing principles.
  4. Increase accessibility for vulnerable populations.

Former New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu says of the report, “In Housing for a Resilient New Orleans, we have designed a new approach so no one is left behind and everyone has a place in this precious City we call home.

The Network’s engagement in New Orleans was lead by consortium member Enterprise.

*311 for Cities launched with the Network in 2014 and was available to more than six hundred cities. Local government staff in these communities could submit a request on any challenge they were facing and the Network team would develop a three to five page response that would highlight recent research, relevant case studies, and best practices. The Network no longer offers 311 for Cities; please contact us at if you think we can be of help to your community.

City of New Orleans: Housing for a Resilient New Orleans