All of America was riveted-and horrified-when Hurricanes Katrina and Rita struck the Gulf Coast in September 2005. Images of people stranded in New Orleans and stories of those who had lost their lives or their homes made it clear that residents of poor neighborhoods had been the most vulnerable to disaster. Before and after the hurricanes, their needs simply weren't anticipated. They were overlooked.They weren't alone in that regard. Although the nation is relatively rich in resources, many individuals and families have needs that aren't being met. Who are they, and what can planners do to address those needs? The editors of Planning magazine set out to find some answers.What followed was a series of articles published in Planning between 2006 and 2008. Those articles-which explored the lives of the homeless, the jobless, the poor, people with special needs, and Katrina victims-have now been collected in Overlooked America. With an introduction by Robert Beauregard, director of the urban planning program in the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation at Columbia University.
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