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After the Flood

“Four years after Katrina,” writes Wayne Curtis in the November 2009 Atlantic, “the rebuilding of New Orleans is not proceeding the way anyone envisioned, nor with the expected cast of characters.” In the narrative of the city’s architectural rebirth, the unlikely leading man is movie star Brad Pitt who, for the past several years, has been working with nonprofits and architects to build cutting-edge green houses. Ultimately, Pitt hopes to fill the decimated Ninth Ward with homes by the likes of Thom Mayne and Frank Gehry. From the looks of these already-completed projects, his dream is off to a promising start.

Click on any of the icons below to view photographs, artists’ renderings, and blueprints of the five homes profiled in Curtis’s article.
Map designed by Anup Kaphle

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Houses of the Future

by Wayne Curtis

“In New Orleans’s Lower Ninth Ward, as you get closer to the failed flood wall, you suddenly see a cluster of modern, colorful, and modestly sized homes, looking like a farm where they grow houses for Dwell magazine. These are the fruits to date of Brad Pitt’s project, Make It Right New Orleans. New Orleanians refer to these homes collectively as ‘the Brad Pitt Houses,’ which gives them the pleasing ring of an ambitious public-housing project from the post–World War II years. But Pitt’s ambitions are not merely utilitarian. He hopes to offer displaced residents affordable, cutting-edge, radically green homes designed by name-brand architects like Thom Mayne and Frank Gehry. And he seems to be succeeding. ” READ MORE