In the River Parishes of Louisiana, which includes St. Charles, St. James, and St. John the Baptist Parishes, residents have long grappled with persistent flooding issues. After numerous delays spanning decades, the monumental initiative to safeguard these communities from flooding officially commenced in 2022. The cornerstone of this endeavor, the West Shore Lake Pontchartrain Levee, is now under construction, promising to furnish 100-year storm protection to a population of 60,000.
However, a significant challenge emerged in the project's execution. The levee's construction site was nestled within a marshland, presenting a logistical challenge with no straightforward access route for construction crews and heavy equipment. Upon careful evaluation of the site's terrain and the equipment necessary for levee construction, it became apparent that nine access roads, collectively spanning a distance of thirteen miles, were indispensable to facilitate the movement of dump trucks from the highways to the levee alignment.
To surmount this hurdle, both St. John the Baptist Parish and the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) collaborated with Contech Engineered Solutions to identify an efficient and cost-effective remedy for these access needs. Ultimately, the solution chosen was the implementation of HEL-COR® Corrugated Metal Pipe (CMP) structures, which proved instrumental in creating the vital access roads. With these roads in place, dump trucks could traverse from the highways to the levee alignment with ease.
Early in 2023, the construction of the HEL-COR® polymer-coated, 12 gage CMP road crossing over the existing drainage canal began. A 72-inch four-barrel structure was the first to be completed. Subsequently, B&K Construction crews undertook the installation of an additional 60-inch diameter HEL-COR® CMP access road. The proximity of a Contech manufacturing facility in Eunice, Louisiana, expedited the construction and delivery of the HEL-COR® CMP to the site. Within a matter of days, the multi-barreled system was set in place and backfilled, clearing the path for the construction of the access roadway above. These roads were of paramount importance to the seamless progression of the new levee's construction.
Upon the project's completion, the West Shore Lake Pontchartrain Hurricane Protection Project will furnish robust 100-year hurricane and storm surge protection to the residents of St. Charles, St. James, and St. John the Baptist Parishes.