Cantrell says administration ‘hit the ground running’ when it comes to flood prep

NEW ORLEANS - LaToya Cantrell said her new administration “hit the ground running” in terms of responding to flooding after a deluge swamped parts of New Orleans about two weeks after she was sworn in as Mayor.

What most people want to know after thunderstorms dropped over two and a half inches of rain in an hour on May 18, Cantrell said, is whether or not the city’s response to weather events is getting better.

“Your administration is doing everything possible to ensure that water stays out of homes, businesses, and of course vehicles,” Cantrell said. “Ultimately, protecting the citizens of New Orleans is a top priority.”

About 95 percent of the city's drainage pumps are currently operational, Cantrell said, marking a significant improvement over the last major citywide flooding event in August 2017.

The week before she took office, Cantrell said she asked the outgoing Landrieu administration to move ahead with $107 million in drainage and stormwater management projects.

Underground water storage cisterns will be installed across the city, and innovative products like water permeable concrete will be installed in flood prone areas, like in front of the Circle Food Store.

“If you care about New Orleans, like I know that we all do, you need to care about storm water and drainage,” she said. “We will never pump our way out of this, which will require us to continue to do more.”