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Mayor Sylvester Turner Meets With Storm Victims In North Houston

Houston’s mayor said the city aimed to move all who lost their homes out of shelters and into temporary or permanent housing by Friday. But many Greenspoint residents left the information session dissatisfied.


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Harvest Time Church
Andrew Schneider
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner at Harvest Time Church

Mayor Sylvester Turner met with flood victims Wednesday – first at North Houston's Harvest Time Church, then at Mark Twain Elementary in the Braeswood Place neighborhood. Turner and other officials sought to address the concerns of residents, many of whom were driven from their homes by Monday's storm.

Hundreds of Greenspoint residents turned up at Harvest Time Church, both to hear Mayor Turner and to make sure he heard them. Reactions to the mayor's comments ranged from hopeful to furious.

André Green and his family were evacuated from the second floor of their apartment building on Imperial Valley Drive, after water swept through the first.

"We're still in the apartment, cause we have nowhere to go," Green said, "but we're still trying to maintain and keep ourselves together and ride it out."

Latrice Richardson and her three children were also flooded out of their first floor home in the Arbor Court Apartments. They're now sheltering at the M.O. Campbell Educational Center. "We need some assistance. We cannot stay in stay in this stadium in one room. Like, we have one shower [for] 200 people. We cannot keep living like that," Richardson said.

Saraiya Ester had already lost one home to water, driven out of New Orleans by Hurricane Katrina. Monday, she lost another to a lightning strike.

"Our house burned down completely," Ester said. "We don't have nowhere to go. The apartment people [are] not trying to help us or nothing."

Mayor Turner said safe housing is the city's immediate priority in recovery efforts. He said the plan was to find temporary or permanent housing by tomorrow for all residents currently in shelters. He said the same applies to people still living in flood damaged homes. Those homes have to be inspected to make sure they’re still safe to live in, and to be gutted and renovated if they aren't.

Editor’s correction: Mark Twain Elementary in the Braeswood Place neighborhood, not in Meyerland as stated in a previous version.