Thursday, August 27, 2015
That photo was taken of the Jax Brewery parking lot in December of 2005. By this time the water was all long gone but 80 percent of the city was a shambles. People were filtering back into town to tend to their properties or clean out apartments. But the rate at which this happened depended on each individual's resources. Many would never catch up with "pace of progress" as this Lens report out this morning on post-Katrina demolitions demonstrates.
Accommodations in town were scarce. FEMA was delivering trailers, paying for hotels, even housing people on cruise ships. FEMA employees were stationed in makeshift "Disaster Recovery Centers" at various points around town to process aid and distribute food and supplies. If I remember correctly the tents in the photo above weren't a DRC but more of a base camp for various federal agencies operating in town.
Today it's back to being a parking lot. Most of the tourists who walk by here every day probably couldn't imagine the scene back then.