Permit Approvals Clear Way for Construction of Two More Sections of Morganza Levee Project



(HOUMA)  The Terrebonne Levee and Conservation District (TLCD) has received permit approvals from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) that will allow the district to proceed with construction of two additional levee sections in the Morganza-to-the-Gulf hurricane protection project.  

The permit modifications approved on May 15 are for levee reaches F and G-1, specifically reducing wetland impacts for Reach F and allowing an access road to be built for Reach G-1 and the Bubba Dove Floodgate on the Houma Navigation Canal (HNC). Reach F is to be located on the west bank of the HNC, extending north from the Bubba Dove Floodgate to Falgout Canal Road.  Reach G-1 will connect the floodgate on the east side of the channel to the Mayfield levee system in lower Dulac near the community of Four Point.  Each levee segment will be built to an initial height of 12 feet.

“Every segment of the Morganza system is important to providing critical hurricane protection to Terrebonne and northern Lafourche parishes, but Reaches F and G-1 have added significance due to their proximity to the Houma Navigation Canal and the new floodgate,” explains TLCD Executive Director Reggie Dupre.  “Completing construction of these levee sections will greatly enhance our ability to protect our communities from rising water in and around the HNC.” 

With the final permits in hand, the TLCD will proceed with land acquisitions to build reach F, and advertising for bids to construct Reaches F, G-1, and the G-1 access road. Construction will be funded by state appropriations and local sales tax revenue. The Bubba Dove Floodgate structure is currently under construction at a local shipyard with an anticipated completion date of March 2013.

 “We applaud the levee district for its work in securing these permits and for moving quickly toward construction. It has been amazing what has been accomplished by our community with only local and state dollars,” says Morganza Action Coalition (MAC) President Sharon Bergeron.  “This is a testament to what our community is able to achieve without the federal government.  While we will continue to push for federal support, we will also aggressively pursue the construction of the Morganza levee system utilizing our very own local and state resources.”

The TLCD initiated permitting and first-lift construction of several levee segments and floodgates along the Morganza alignment in 2009 with state appropriations and parish dedicated sales tax revenue, recognizing that hurricane protection was essential to the region’s sustainability, despite the lack of federal funds for the project.  To date, $226 million of work funded solely by non-federal dollars is planned or underway for the first 30 miles of the levee, lock and floodgate system.

“Each permit approval gets us one step closer to hurricane protection for all of us who call Terrebonne and Lafourche parishes home,” says Sen. Norby Chabert.  “I am committed to do all I can in Baton Rouge to continue to secure state support for Morganza, and I join MAC in calling on the federal government to do their part in protecting this region that provides so much to this nation.”

“It’s great news to hear that not only is the Bubba Dove Floodgate on the HNC under construction, but the levees connecting it to the rest of the Morganza system will soon be under construction as well,” says Rep. Gordy Dove. “Our local and state commitment has allowed us to get a very good start on this project, and together we can continue to make progress toward effective hurricane protection for our residents and businesses.” 

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