Ascension receives corps authority for additional drainage project

Published: Jun. 2, 2021 at 10:06 AM CDT
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ASCENSION PARISH, La. (WAFB) - A new drainage system is coming to Ascension Parish to drain the Bluff Swamp area in periods of high water.

Currently, water from Bluff Swamp drains through a small culvert under Highway 74 into Morgan Swamp to the south, where it pools. Ascension Parish President Clint Cointment’s proposal, which the US Army Corps of Engineers officially accepted on June 1, would open a ditch from Morgan Swamp allowing it to drain into New River, and then on to the Marvin Braud Pumping Station.

“At this time, the only way to drain Bluff Swamp is to the north into Bayou Manchac,” said President Cointment. “I have studied these bayous and waterways for years, and I know that this is a feasible solution.”

The first part of this project would be to open a passage from Morgan Swamp to New River. A second action will install a larger culvert, with a flood gate, under Highway 74. This flood gate will only be opened if there is capacity in New River to accept additional water.

“Under no circumstances will the Parish allow any residents in the Marvin Braud Basin to be negatively impacted,” said Cointment.

He added that work on the initial phase of the project will begin immediately.

“This gives us one more tool to help the people when floodwaters threaten their homes,” Cointment said.

The following statement is from Cointment:

“As your Parish President I want all our residents to know that I am doing everything I can to help reduce the flooding issues surrounding the Spanish Lake & Bluff Swamp Basin. In addition to adding pumps, we have cut the road way at Alligator Bayou at Fish Bayou last Friday May 28. Earlier today I announced that the Parish has received authority from the US Army Corps of Engineers to open a new drainage system that will help to drain the Bluff Swamp area in periods of high water.

While it is not only my duty and responsibility to do everything in my power it is also very personal to me. I understand the fear and worries of these residents, I helped when the home I grew up in (my parents’ home) had flooded in 2014 & 2016, so I know firsthand what it is like to see rain in the forecast and not see the waters receding as fast as any of us would like can strike up old feelings of panic and concern.

I am coordinating with several agencies to open new drainage systems and as we proceed in implementing the necessary procedure I will share those with everyone.”

WAFB’S Austin Kemker will have more on 9News at 4, 5 and 6.

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