ASCENSION PARISH, LA (WAFB) - If viewing this story on a mobile device or in an email, click the link to watch the press conference live - http://bit.ly/2b4QoOk
The problem is too much water and the solution is getting it to go somewhere else, but where exactly would that be. Iberville and Ascension Parish leaders believe they know where to send theirs.
A press conference was held Thursday to announce a joint decision by both parishes to establish a controlled surface cut of 40 feet along the top of Alligator Bayou Road within Ascension Parish to lower the elevation in the Spanish Lake Basin including Bluff Swamp.
It may be a small hole, but officials say it could be a big help as they want to cut open part of the Frog Bayou locks on Alligator Bayou Road, leading water out of the Spanish Lakes Basin and into Bayou Manchac. Ascension Public Works Director Bill Roux said this will make the flood levels recede.
"The main thing is flooded houses. Eight, seven feet of water inside their house that will remain eight and seven feet of water for months if we don't do something radical like this."
Roux emphasized that is a controlled cut, and officials already have hundreds of "Super bags" of sand in place to relieve any problems, like a major rise in Bayou Manchac that may have the potential to flow back into the Spanish Lake Basin.
Parish leaders say this is the best way to move forward.
"If we would wait to open up the locks until this water recedes, or we could take an aggressive approach to get the water out of our people's homes," said Iberville Parish President Mitchell Ourso.
The process will not until the water level of Bayou Manchac is two feet lower than the level in the Frog Bayou, and even then, it will take a long time before homes are out from under water.
"Probably for several weeks before we even start the process, and the process by itself is months to get it to the standpoint where people are walking around, in their houses without water," Roux said.
In addition, the placement of pumps will be established downstream of this cut for additional removal of the water from Spanish Lake.