Master of Science (MS)


Environmental Sciences

Document Type



Hurricane Katrina made landfall on August 29, 2005, flooding over eighty percent of the Greater New Orleans area and causing a mass exodus of the local population. Statistical analysis was used to quantify recovery at a neighborhood level and answer the following questions: What is the recovery rate of New Orleans neighborhoods ten years after Hurricane Katrina? What factors account for variation in recovery rates among neighborhoods? Six neighborhoods in Orleans Parish were selected for further study based on their unique geographical and recovery metrics. Recovery rates among the seventy-two neighborhoods were based on a comparison of United States Postal Service active delivery of mail to residences in Orleans Parish. USPS delivery rates are considered an accurate indicator of population change following a disaster. The neighborhoods with the highest recovery rates based on active delivery of mail were the Central Business District (259.5%), Gert Town (116.9%), and Algiers Point (111.9%). Those with the lowest included West Lake Forest (54.9%), B.W. Cooper (45.6%), and Lower Ninth Ward (36.7%). A closer look at the recovery narrative of six selected neighborhoods is included to provide additional context for consideration of the research results. This study provides an essential look at the chief components of neighborhood solvency which will affect New Orleans in the future and further solidifies the inexorable link between New Orleans residents, their native ecosystem, and the built infrastructure which has done so much to change every facet of the city.



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Committee Chair

Reams, Margaret