Ascension and Iberville officials gathered at the Parish Courthouse in Gonzales to hold a press conference today to address plans to relieve flooding from Spanish Lake Basin and Bluff Swamp.
Both bodies of water are not able to drain without the locks being opened at Alligator Bayou and Frog Bayou, causing flooding, said Ascension Department of Public Works Director Bill Roux. By making controlled cuts in the road near the Frog Bayou lock it will alleviate flooding. The locks will be approximately 70 feet long and will not go deeper than the elevation at Bayou Manchac.
"As the elevation at Bayou Manchac lowers, we will lower the depth of the cut," Roux said. "At not time will we enable the water within Bayou Manchac to flow back in Bluff and Spanish Lake, into that basin."
He added that there are dozens of sand baskets that has been placed by national guard and Iberville Parish to protect Alligator Bayou Road from flooding.
"We will utilize those sand baskets for protection in case we get into a situation where, at some point in the future that we get an event that cause Mancha to backup. It is completely controlled. At every point in this process we will be monitoring the situation downstream to make sure that we are not putting too much water downstream that Bayou Manchac or the Amite River can't handle," Roux said.
"What we are doing is a joint effort. This is a basin, if we don't do let something out it is going to sit there until it dwindles through our small cuts that we have," said Parish Councilman Randy Clouatre. "This is something that was in the works, trying to get done in a timely manner. We ran into a lot of issues over the past couple years, but we feel as time goes on we will get it done permanently."