January 8, 2014

Brad Pitt and the leaders of his non-profit organisation, Make It Right, are considering legal action over claims rotting wood was supplied to rebuild homes in New Orleans, Louisiana in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

The Inglourious Basterds star founded the group to aid in the environmentally friendly rebuilding of the city’s Lower 9th Ward after the deadly hurricane left the neighbourhood in tatters in 2005.

Now some of the glass-infused wood used to build the houses has allegedly started to rot, despite a 40-year guarantee of its durability.

Make It Right spokeswoman Taylor Royles tells New Orleans’ The Advocate magazine they will be replacing all of the wood over the next six months, even on the homes that have not shown signs of decay, costing the organisation about $US150,000 ($NZ180,000).

Royles insists they are considering legal action to recoup the cash, stating, “We are evaluating our rights under the law and under the product warranty.

“We hope to have a candid discussion with the company and have asked them to put their insurance carrier on notice. We prefer to resolve this short of litigation, but we are prepared to pursue all legal remedies if necessary.”

Pitt adds in a statement: “Make It Right is ambitious and tries new things all the time in order to make our homes better. Where we find innovative products that didn’t perform, we move quickly to correct these things for our homeowners.”

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December 30, 2013
by admin / Make It Right

Actor Brad Pitt’s Make It Right Foundation, which has built 100 energy-efficient new homes in the Hurricane Katrina-ravaged Lower 9th Ward, is considering legal action against the manufacturer of an innovative glass-infused wood that was used in some of the homes’ outdoor steps and front porches. The wood has begun rotting, despite being guaranteed for 40 years, a Make It Right spokeswoman said.

Construction crews used the wood product, called TimberSIL, to build decks and stairs for about 30 homes from 2008 to 2010, said Taylor Royle, the Make It Right spokeswoman.

TimberSIL is described in promotional materials provided by its South Carolina-based manufacturer as offering “an effective barrier in lumber to rot, decay and common wood problems without using toxic ingredients.”

Make It Right, known for its homes’ eye-catching designs and “green” building features such as solar panels and rainwater collectors, was interested in an alternative to conventional treated lumber, which “usually uses chemicals,” Royle said. “In trying to be sustainable and green, we didn’t want to use decking lumber that had chemicals in it,” she said.

The absence of chemicals in the TimberSIL wood meant it could be “mulched and composted at the end of its life cycle,” she said.

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December 25, 2013
by admin / Make It Right

The management of Make It Right, actor Brad Pitt’s post-flood architecture development in the Lower Ninth Ward, will hold a second Hollywood-style benefit gala in New Orleans on May 17, 2014. Make It Right, which began in 2007, has produced 100 homes for former neighborhood residents, designed by some of the world’s finest architects, including Frank Gehry, Thom Mayne and Eskew+Dumas+Ripple. In the past six years, Make It Right has become a jewel in New Orleans’ crown of tourist attractions and brought activity to an otherwise ruined area of the city.

Make It Right reports that last year’s gala on March 10, 2012, raised over $4 million, which was used in the construction of 20 homes. The 2012 party and concert at the Hyatt Regency New Orleans featured appearances by Brad Pitt, Ellen DeGeneres, Drew Brees, Rihanna, Sheryl Crow, Kanye West, Aziz Ansari, Seal, Snoop Dogg, the Soul Rebels and others.

The 2014 benefit gala will take place at the Sugar Mill at 1021 Convention Center Blvd. The price of admission is $1,000 per person. Make It Right will announce the performers and attending celebrities on its website in 2014. Tickets will be for sale through the Make It Right website and by calling 504.620.3200.

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November 8, 2013

Brad Pitt’s organization Make It Right is debuting the transformation of a rundown vacant metro school into new affordable housing in the urban core.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held this weekend for the former Bancroft Elementary School, but they gave an early behind-the-scenes look at the redevelopment. Kansas City, MO, Mayor Sly James and Congressman Emanuel Cleaver, II will participate in the weekend ceremony for what will now be the Bancroft School Apartments.

Local companies partnered with Make It Right to build the energy-efficient apartments located at 4300 Tracy Avenue from the school that originally opened in 1904 and then had sat empty for thirteen years.

“When the school closed it became a blight, a drain on the community. It brought things down. It didn’t help elevate it,” said Jim Nichols, the owner of Dalmark Development Group.

Crews are finishing the final touches to begin leasing the apartments to low-income families.

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October 10, 2013
by admin / Make It Right

Brad Pitt has teamed up with a team of architects to create a storm-resistant home in Queens.

The 49-year-old actor’s “Make it Right” charity will build a $50,000 house in the area, which was ravaged by Hurricane Sandy last October.

The house of choice, called Resilient House, was the winner in a design competition courtesy of the American Institute of Architects and Architecture for Humanity.

The house, designed by Toronto architects Sunstainable.TO, features a split roof that creates a row of windows to keep the house bright and warm year-round; it needs almost no heating or cooling.

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August 5, 2013

Thanks Gabriella.