Editor’s Note: Last year, Nolavie’s Renee Peck interviewed Luisa Dantas about her Land of Opportunity platform, an experimental web platform that “explores post-crisis community (re)building in America.” The site features an interactive video player that allows viewers to explore and compare layered narratives about people and processes across urban landscapes. These multimedia stories are organized into categories, and last week, Luisa and the Land of Opp team launched a new category: “Community/Commodity”, with three spanking new videos. Below, Luisa & Co. share and discuss one of the videos, “Bricks and Sticks: Public Vs. Private.”
Is access to affordable housing a human right? In the years since Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans has seen all of the “Big Four” public housing developments demolished and replaced by mixed-income developments, spearheaded by public/private partnerships. This drastic shift, enabled by the sudden displacement of so many residents, is part of a national trend towards transforming public housing developments into smaller mixed-income communities built and managed by private developers.
In the interactive piece, “Bricks and Sticks: Public vs. Private,” we wanted to explore the larger question of how — and if — private interests can protect the public good in the case of affordable housing. Hear the perspectives of developers, planners, residents, advocates and politicians as they debate some of the city’s most pressing — and unprecedented — political and social dilemmas.
Rooted in New Orleans, the video features familiar local players like developer Pres Kabacoff, former Mayor Ray Nagin, Mayor Mitch Landrieu, social justice attorney Bill Quigley, and housing advocates including the Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center and Survivors Village. Also hear from national and international experts and view multimedia content from researchers, journalists, Shelterforce Magazine, Right to The City, and more.