By FIONA ROBERTS
Desolation: This eerie photograph shows a corroded rollercoaster soaring into the sky behind a graffiti-covered ride at the abandoned Six Flags theme park, New Orleans
New Orleans has made a remarkable recovery since the city was devastated by flooding during Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
But now stunning new images have emerged which show how one part of the Big Easy has yet to be revived - its Six Flags theme park.
The haunting photographs, taken over the past six years, reveal an almost post-apocalyptic landscape dominated by twisted and corroded rides, now silent forever.
Graffiti covers many of the buildings, welcoming visitors to 'Zombieland' - a fitting name for the eerie park, which has been completely abandoned.
Eerie: A smashed-up clown's head looks terrifying amid the abandoned rides, like this rusting rollercoaster car, right. The flood-waters reached up to seven feet high
A smashed-up clowns head lies abandoned on the floor, while most of the rides have been left for the weeds to colonise.
During the flooding, Six Flags, in a low-lying area towards the east of the city, was submerged in up to seven feet of water, which wasn't drained for almost a month.
The combination of sea and river water corroded most of the rides, damaging them beyond repair. According to a report at the time, 80 per cent of the buildings were completely destroyed.
'Welcome to Zombieland, kids': Vandals have taken advantage of the park's devastation to spray graffiti on every surface
Abandoned: Floodwaters ripped through the Six Flags amusement park, flattening 80 per cent of the buildings and damaging most of the rides beyond repair
Drowned: Vegetation has grown over these abandoned trucks, which ironically used to be part of a jungle ride
Only one attraction could be salvaged - Batman: The Ride, which escaped more or less unscathed because its operating platform was higher than the flood waters.
For several months there were rumours that the site's leaseholders, Six Flags, would be able to reopen the park in 2006 or 2007, using an insurance payout.
The firm took over the site, formerly known as Jazzland, in 2002. But it had been losing money and was struggling to attract visitors, making it the chain's least popular park even before Hurricane Katrina.
Derelict: Most of the park has been reduced to tangled, rusty metal, after it was submerged for more than a month in a corrosive mixture of sea and river water
Paradise lost: The blacked-out sign for 'paradise hot dogs' points mockingly at the park, where weeds have been left to grow over many of the abandoned rides
Faded grandeur: These once proud buildings are now slowly falling apart after they were devastated by the floods - but the graffiti oddly supplies a note of hope
In 2006 Six Flags declared the park an 'effective total loss' and tried to get out of its 75-year lease with the City of New Orleans, saying insurers were not paying out enough to repair it.
A year after Katrina, the firm removed Batman: The Ride to be refurbished. Two years later it was reopened at Six Flags Fiesta Texas in San Antonio, where it was called Goliath.
Since then developers have proposed several plans to save the park. In 2008, Southern Star Amusement announced a $70million proposal to take over the lease and double the number of rides to 60, as well as creating a water park.
Fallen silent: This carousel has been left to rust away like the rest of the park, which was already losing money before Katrina hit
Destruction: These computers, left, were smashed to pieces by the floods, while this sorry-looking sign has been left to rust away in the weeds
Washed out: The colour has faded from this once-jaunty sign for a SpongeBob Square Pants ride
In 2009 it revealed it planned to work with Nickelodeon to create the company's biggest-ever theme park, which would create 600 jobs.
But the $165million project has failed to materialise. According to the most recent reports, Southern Star Amusement filed a letter of intent to redevelop the park with the city council in January this year.
Until then, Six Flags will remain as a haunting memorial to the devastation of Katrina.
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