Brad Pitt puts £2.5m into rebuilding New Orleans homes
Brad Pitt has launched plans to help regenerate flood-ravaged sections of New Orleans with new eco-friendly and flood-proof homes.
More than two years after the destruction of much of the city by Hurricane Katrina, the actor announced his plans for 150 new houses by next year at a press conference yesterday.
Pitt has put up £2.5m ($5m) of his own money and launched a website asking corporations, church groups and others for donations for his adopt-a-house project.
Pitt, who wanted to be an architect before taking up acting, commissioned 13 architectural firms to produce houses that would incorporate solar power and other environmentally-sound designs, The Guardian reports.
They had to be at least 5ft off the ground, with a porch and three bedroom, and cost about £75,000 ($150,000) to build.
The homes will initially be built in the Lower Ninth ward, one of the poorest, mainly black, areas of the city which was flattened by flooding and remains almost deserted.
The actor fell in love with the city while filming Interview With the Vampire in 1994. Earlier this year he set up home in the city’s French Quarter with Angelina Jolie and their children.
‘I’ve always had a fondness for this place – it’s like no other,’ he said, adding that rebuilding the Lower Ninth was a bigger priority than his film career.
‘Right now this is the focus, and we’re going to see this thing through.’