HOUSTON - August 29 will mark 10 years since Hurricane Katrina rocked the city of New Orleans. Which means, at the same time, this anniversary will also mark ten years since many New Orleanians became new Houstonians.
According to some estimates, as many as 250,000 evacuees landed in the Bayou City after the 2005 storm, and on Thursday, current New Orleans mayor Mitch Landrieu came to town to thank Houston for its hospitality all those years ago.
“It was a tremendous stress, but it was an incredible gift of mercy and goodness, and I just want to tell you how thankful and grateful the people of New Orleans are to the people of Houston," said Landrieu.
Even a decade later, the City of Houston still has no definite number of how many New Orleans transplants ended up in Houston after Katrina, but Mayor Annise Parker says, head count or not, their impact on Houston has been undeniable.
“We already had a lot of cultural overlap. Our food became just a little bit spicier, and our culture became just a little bit richer, because so many people came here," said Parker.
As Katrina's actual anniversary creeps closer, Mayor Landrieu says the Crescent City is getting back on its feet, but the progress they have made in New Orleans, has a lot to do with the help they received from places like Houston.