Fishing park on the west bank?

Parish needs to open diversion to bank fishermen

May 07, 2008 at 2:22 pm  | Mobile Reader | Pring this storyPrint 

On Sunday, the police cited four unsuspecting anglers with criminal trespassing for bank fishing along the containment levee of the Davis Pond diversion.

In two unrelated incidents, two boys and two men apparently heard the fish calling on this beautiful spring-like afternoon and snuck past the locked gate in order to get to them.

It's no secret that fishing in the canal that begins just past the fence on Willowdale Blvd. is fantastic. Ever since it was dug out, the 7-foot deep canal has been offering up bull bream, slab-sized crappie and largemouth bass right off the bank. In fact, ever since the diversion opened, neighborhood anglers have been skirting the locked gate, ignoring no trespassing signs to fish there.

Sgt. Dwayne Lagrange said that the sheriff's office had previously been giving verbal warnings to trespassers. They recently made the decision to begin charging trespassers with the misdemeanor after a pump in the area was vandalized.

In our view, instead of charging anglers with criminal trespassing, the parish ought to turn it into a park and allow residents to fish there.

Located only a short bike ride away from the Willowdale/Willowridge neighborhoods, this vibrant community, which houses well over 1000 children, currently doesn't even have a playground available to them though one is planned. This incredible area is easily accessible, already maintained by the parish and would take very little improvement to make its 300 yards of bank-fishing user friendly.

Our forward-thinking leaders should look at this western bank along the diversion as a perfect opportunity to provide a recreational fishing park on the west bank.

Why not take advantage of what Mother Nature, and the Corps of Engineers, have provided?

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