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Wednesday, December 4, 2019

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New floodgate will provide stronger flood protection

New floodgate will provide stronger flood protection

The intersection of LA Highway 1 and the Larose to Golden Meadow Hurricane Protection Project, south of Golden Meadow, has been greatly improved by the construction of the new floodgate over the road ramp.

Picciola & Associates, Inc. designed the ramp and gate to correct the previous substandard design of the road ramp, and a gate to improve the flood reliability with the use of a steel swing gate. In the closed position, the gate protects the road to an 18 ft. elevation.

Besides better flood protection for the people and structures inside the system, the gate allows the South Lafourche Levee District to keep the roadway open for a longer period to allow more vehicles to enter the protection system.

Before this project, the levee district had to prepare by mobilizing equipment, getting sand in place and filling Hesco Baskets with the sand. This took place hours before strong winds could be expected.

With the new gate in place, the highway can now be closed within minutes of making the decision to close. For the same reasons, reopening the highway can occur within minutes after the decision to re-open is made. This results in the highway being open much longer prior to the event.

Having the steel gate in place will also offer the people of Grand Isle and Port Fourchon more time to enter the levee system. Having that same steel gate in place will offer the people and property inside the system much stronger and reliable protection.

An elevated ramp to 18 ft. was the original intent, but engineering studies indicated that the weight of the proposed ramp would cause movement of the Leon Theriot Lock and I-wall structures. For that reason, a safe 12 ft. elevation ramp with a 6 ft. high steel gate became the constructed project which now provides an 18 ft. elevation.

Funding for the project was provided by the taxpayers of the South Lafourche Levee District who provided $1.5M for the project, along with Gov. John Bell Edwards, Sen. Norby Chabert and Rep. Jerry “Truck” Gisclair who assisted in acquiring $1M of state funding needed to complete the project.