Post Katrina Housing Assessment

Evaluating Hurricane Katrina’s impact on the Gulf Coast’s housing market

RDN conducted multiple Housing Requirements Assessments (HRAs) for the US Navy in the Gulf Coast Region to evaluate the availability of community housing for its personnel in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, many of whom had lost use of their homes due to the storm. The US Navy had to make decisions regarding the provision of temporary and permanent housing and possible relocation of missions in order to provide for the continued well-being and quality of life of military personnel stationed in the region. The purpose of our analyses was to present projections of community housing availability and government-provided housing requirements to assist the US Navy in making the best possible decisions for housing its personnel.

One of the main challenges in this study was projecting reconstruction rates in the aftermath of a major hurricane. RDN was able to rely on prior corporate experience in the Pensacola area after Hurricane Ivan (2004) to provide a historical baseline assumption of reconstruction rates. However, in the aftermath of such a severe storm as Katrina labor and capital were not as available for speedy reconstruction. By combining our experience with new data, we projected that the reconstruction of largely or totally destroyed units would not be complete within the five-year planning horizon of the study, and units severely damaged but repairable would require approximately three years to be repaired. These projected reconstruction rates were added to the current quality and condition of local housing stock to provide the supply side of this local housing market.

On the demand side for housing, we forcasted population, employment, and the extent of the effect of the hurricane and the subsequent reconstruction on local economic sectors over a five-year planning horizon. Between the changes to the local economy and the changes to the housing market, these assessments helped the Navy address the needs of the service members impacted by Hurricane Katrina and lead them on a path to recovery.

  • Testimonials

    “RDN has shown commitment, professionalism, and dedication to this contract. [They are] very responsive in a timely manner. Their professionalism with Navy customers rises above any other contractor we have dealt with. The company thinks of new initiatives to get the job done, always thinking outside the box to help address any unusual problems…Their final product is flawless and delivered in such a manner that our customers are exceptionally pleased.”

    Robin Woodruff

    Contracting Officer, USACE Louisville District.