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New Orleans’ resilience plan wins national award

The American Planning Association (APA) has announced that Resilient New Orleans, the planning strategy by the city of New Orleans to make the city more resilient, has received the 2016 National Planning Excellence Award for a Best Practice.

APA’s Best Practice award is given each year to a tool, project, or program exhibiting state-of-the-art planning methods and practices that help create communities of lasting value. Recipients of the Best Practice award demonstrate results and the importance of innovative planning in building and strengthening communities.

Having faced a variety of challenges and disasters in recent years New Orleans created a comprehensive plan that focused instead on resilience, not rebuilding. The plan would strengthen the city to better manage risk and prepare for future challenges.

“The development of our city’s first resilience strategy is a transformative milestone,” said Mayor Mitch Landrieu. “In New Orleans, we have been experiencing the effects of climate change and sea level rise for many years, and this work makes it possible for those threats to become opportunities. I am delighted that our work has been recognized by APA and hopeful that other cities across America will make similar commitments toward resilience planning.” 

“We are very proud of the positive changes we are already making as a result of Resilient New Orleans and grateful that our city is being recognized for this innovative approach to planning,” said Jeffrey Hebert, who was appointed as the first chief resilience officer of New Orleans in November 2014. “Through a focus on interconnectedness and implementation, we are building a stronger, more equitable, and dynamic New Orleans for the citizens of both today and the future.”

Resilient New Orleans was developed with process guidance from 100 Resilient Cities—Pioneered by the Rockefeller Foundation (100RC), as well as HR&A Advisors. Input was received from over 350 local, national, and international stakeholders.

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