I-10 East is impassible. It's been a few years since I was in NOLA, but it seems like I-10 west is elevated for a long distance west of the city. I know it is elevated throughout most of the city proper. The pic I linked to yesterday shows I-10 west where it crosses Lake Ponchartrain. Not very promising going that way. I think it is relatively easily repaired by barge-crane, provided the support piers have not been damaged in the collapse. Inspection, however, could take weeks, given the number of elevated piers along the route.
I drove through Northridge, CA, a couple months after the earthquake there. We had seen the pictures on TV of the collapsed freeways and overpasses, so I expected there to be major difficulties with traffic routes, but was amazed to see almost no signs of the damage which had looked so devastating a few weeks before. I think once they get past the shock and beyond the emergency nature of the situation, the rebuilding will take place at a high speed.
All those people will still be wanting to make a living, you know.
RE:And then they still have to deal with the filth, contamination, and disease
This is New Orleans we're talking about, they've been dealing with that for centuries.
Quod scripsi, scripsi.