In 2015, the New Orleans-based Make It Right Foundation, launched by actor Brad Pitt, announced that it would take the lead on developing six to 50 new single-family homes in Kansas City. Work was supposed to begin in May 2015, but today little progress is apparent, reports Kansas City Star reporter Steve Vockrodt.
The Make It Right Foundation purchased six parcels in the city’s Manheim Park neighborhood from Aug. 18, 2015, to Feb. 4, 2016, but no construction has started.
Nearly three weeks ago, James Mazzuto, chief operating officer for the Make It Right Foundation, canceled an interview with The Kansas City Star shortly before it was scheduled to begin. He has since not responded to several subsequent requests for comment.
Pitt started the foundation in 2007 and built 110 homes in New Orleans’ Lower Ninth Ward, a region along the Industrial Canal where levees broke during Hurricane Katrina in 2005, leading to disastrous flooding there.
According to Thom Pepper, executive director of Common Ground Relief, the foundation has experienced its issues over the years. Pepper said residents didn’t like the design of some of the new houses, which let in little natural light. Architectural problems, namely flat roofs in a rainy climate, forced Make It Right to rebuild some of its houses, according to Pepper.