Ascension Parish begins work on Comprehensive Floodplain Master Plan

Staff Report

Contractors for the East Ascension Consolidated Gravity Drainage District have begun surveying channels as an initial step in the development of the parish’s comprehensive floodplain master plan.

The Ascension Parish Governmental Complex located on E. Worthey Street in Gonzales.

Survey work involves multi-person crews in the field physically measuring the width and depth of drainage channels and bayous, according to a parish release.

“Data collected from the survey work will be used to determine the capacity of the parish’s drainage basins and be utilized to run computer models that will determine projects and assist in alleviating future flooding,” Parish President Clint Cointment said.

Survey work will progress over the next several months, and resident should expect to see survey crews in the northern areas of the parish initially, with crews expanding their work across the eastern portion of the parish over time.

Ascension Parish received record flooding from the Amite River and tributaries in August 2016. That flood demonstrated the need for a long-term comprehensive solution for effective floodplain management. The master plan will be used as a management tool to reduce risk of the damaging effects of floods, protect people and property, maintain and enhance natural floodplain values; and manage water and land resources within floodplains.

The master plan ultimately will be developed into a resource to document known flooding problems, provide a database of flooding and drainage issues, and establish overall procedures and measures for addressing flood issues before, during and after major events and provide a tool to evaluate proposed development to ensure it does not result in offsite impacts.

“This floodplain master plan will become a living document for our local communities to use and manage flood hazards identified by the Parish,” Cointment said. “As part of this project, we will develop a capital improvement plan for planning, design and construction of recommended projects that we can begin implementing soon to reduce flooding impacts Ascension Parish citizens have become all too familiar with in recent years.”

The master plan is being developed by a consultant team led by HNTB Corporation. Should citizens have questions or information related to the master plan, they should contact John Monzon, HNTB Project Manager, at jmonzon@hntb.com or (225) 368-2823.