River destroys Spillway Road

Temporary fix estimated to cost $225,000


July 08, 2011 at 9:12 am  | Mobile Reader | Pring this storyPrint 

Several areas of Spillway Road were damaged due to the almost complete opening of the Bonnet Carre Spillway. The most severe damage occurred near the seven culvert crossings.
Courtesy Photo
Several areas of Spillway Road were damaged due to the almost complete opening of the Bonnet Carre Spillway. The most severe damage occurred near the seven culvert crossings.
The opening of the Bonnet Carre Spillway has left Spillway Road in bad shape and with more damage than the road suffered in 2008, according to Renee Simpson, St. Charles Parish spokeswoman.

The road is an important corridor through the spillway, and serves as a pathway for hundreds of children during the school year. Others use the road to travel between Montz and Norco, and when the road is closed, motorists must use the heavily traveled Airline Highway as a detour.


Spillway Road is maintained by parish government, although the land that it passes through is federally owned. It was originally built as a state highway that served as a continuation of River Road.


The road suffered damage to multiple areas due to the almost complete opening of the spillway for more than a month. The force of the water eroded the road most severely near the seven culvert crossings, about 70-80 feet in each direction from those crossings.


It’s estimated that it will cost $225,000 for a temporary fix to get the road back in service, according to Simpson.
The price does not include overlay but will include road base repair, materials and compaction.


“We don’t have a precise timeline on the temporary repair, but we are looking for complete restoration by the end of 2011 for sure,” Simpson  said.


When the spillway was opened three years ago, it caused almost $500,000 in damage to the road and the repairs took six months to complete.


“We hope that since we did declare an emergency related to the river levels that there will be some FEMA money available to reimburse the parish,” Simpson said.


The road is usually the only casualty in any spillway opening. Other parish-owned recreational assets survived and are not in need of repair.




View other articles written Jonathan Menard

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