Pumps to help solve Riverlands flooding to be bid out this fall

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 10, 2010



LAPLACE – St. John the Baptist Parish administrators hope to go out for bids this fall on a drainage improvement project they say will correct constant flooding problems in the Riverlands subdivision in LaPlace.

Parish engineers have given their approval to design specifications for three new pumping stations that will help move water off residential streets and into drainage canals. The identical pumps will tie into the Vicknair drainage canal that runs from LaPlace into Lake Pontchartrain.

“I made a promise in taking office that I would work to rectify the drainage issues that have affected Riverlands for more than 30 years,” said Councilman Ronnie Smith, who represents the Riverlands area. “I’m happy to see this project get off the ground.”

Parish Engineer Chuck Savoie said the pump stations would be placed at the foot of Chattsworth Drive, where it dead-ends at the canal, on Parlange Loop and on Welham Loop. He said the pumps work similar to a sewer lift station in moving the water off the streets.

The pump stations are part of a massive drainage study conducted in the parish in 2001. The project is one of several drainage improvements tied to the $29.5 million bond issue passed by the voters in April of 2009. Savoie said the estimated budget for the three pump stations is about $1.4 million.

St. John Parish financial advisor Pat McTopy said the parish is hoping to go out for bids on the pumps by Oct. 1.