Construction preparation begins on LSU lakes

People are frustrated over having to look at an algae infested lake that was once a staple of the Capital City.
Published: Jun. 27, 2022 at 4:49 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Whether you were riding your bike, going for a run, or simply driving past the lakes, you might have noticed some construction equipment laying around. It’s a good indicator that the project is right on schedule. But until it begins, it’s like the song that seems to never end.

“Something definitely needs to be done,” said local Dan Miller.

“Seeing all the algae, it’s not very pretty, it’s not very relaxing,” said local Manzi Williams.

People are frustrated with having to look at an algae-infested lake that was once a staple of the Capital City. But now optimism can be felt around the lakes as you can now actually see signs of work being done.

“I am relieved, this place won’t go away hopefully, this is a jewel of Baton Rouge,” Miller continued.

“I’m actually excited to see the finished product, and I’m actually happy to see what’s next,” Williams added.

The construction equipment around the lakes is the preparation to begin the first phase of the project, which is right on par with what Gov. John Bel Edwards said could be expected back in April.

Speaking Monday, June 27, with the project manager for CSRS, Mark Goodson, he assures me the project is going accordingly. And although the equipment is just preparation, they expect to begin construction before the end of this week.

“We’re waiting on the permit for the Corps of Engineers to allow us to do that. Again, that’s just for what we call the advanced work package. Once we get that done and see how the different means and methods perform, our designers will finish plans for the lakes project,” said Goodson.

One of the core elements of the design is to create something called a forebay, a sort of underwater pit that will help trap and catch sediment.

“So, these forebays will help trap that material, so that it doesn’t spread out all over the lake and create the same problem again,” Goodson explained.

The advanced work that Goodson was talking about is set to be wrapped up by mid-July. From there, the designers and contractors will finalize the construction plans for the project, so they can hopefully begin large-scale construction before the end of the year.

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