The Greater New Orleans Urban Water Plan, which was released in September 2013, directly addresses groundwater and storm water as critical factors in shaping a safer, more livable, and economically vibrant Southeast Louisiana.
State, local, and grassroots leaders gathered earlier this month for the two-year update to discuss opportunities for advancing green infrastructure and water management specializations in their businesses.
During these last two years, the Urban Water Plan, administered by Greater New Orleans, Inc. (GNO, Inc.), has influenced both water-related implementation and investments in the region, and received numerous awards:
- The American Planning Association: 2015 National Planning Excellence Award for Environmental Planning for the Greater New Orleans Urban Water Plan
- The NADO 2014 Innovation Award for the Greater New Orleans Urban Water Plan App
- The NADO 2013 Innovation Award for the Greater New Orleans Comprehensive, Integrated and Sustainable Water Management Strategy
The Urban Water Plan is not the only initiative focused on water in New Orleans. The Water Challenge is a collaboration between Propeller: A Force for Social Innovation, The Idea Village and the Greater New Orleans Foundation (GNOF) that aims to identify and support entrepreneurial solutions that apply innovative approaches to how we live with water.
Each year during New Orleans Entrepreneur Week one day is designated as Water Challenge Day. Organizations, environmentalists, and industry leaders gather to share and discuss better solutions for how we live with water.
“In this post Katrina environment, we have come realize the need to build more resilient communities with a greater emphasis on green infrastructure,” said Kazem Alikhani, director of the Jefferson Parish Public Works Department.
On Water Challenge Day earlier this year, organizers launched the “Living With Water” civic design challenge for to region to showcase innovative solutions to water issues critical to Louisiana’s economy, ecosystem, and coastal protection.
“The ‘Living with Water’ ideas in the Greater New Orleans Urban Water Plan show how smart water management and smart redevelopment can improve the City’s overall social, economic and cultural resilience. To see the Water Plan adopted in the New Orleans Resilience Plan is humbling. To see it transforming some New Orleans’ neighborhood renewal projects is inspirational,” said Dale Morris, senior economist at the Royal Netherlands Embassy.