Despite local area residents wishes that the MR-GO be converted to a landfill, the federal government is planning on installing flood gates at the Industrial Canal and the MR-GO.
Although the MR-GO proposal is not all that area residents have been asking for, the addition of the Industrial Canal locks have to make people happy.
This is the first time since Katrina slammed the area that President Bush and the Army Corps of Engineers have formally proposed building gates to beef up protection for the New Orleans area from the ravages of another hurricane.
The proposal calls for building one set of gates where the Industrial Canal flows into Lake Pontchartrain and a second set somewhere west of the juncture of the Mississippi River-Gulf Outlet and the Intracoastal Waterway.
New Orleaneans will probably welcome the news about MR-GO but I doubt it offers any solace to the residents of lowers Plaquemines Parish. You see, MR-GO levees breached in many locations worsening flooding conditions in areas like Meroux and Violet. However, if the funding for the locks also includes strengenthing the levees of MR-GO, the this news will be welcome indeed.
As for the inclusion of the Industrial Canal in the lock system, this can only be good. And fortunately, the construction won't stop there.
Other enhancements to the region's battered hurricane protection system include construction of permanent pump stations at the lake for three New Orleans outfall canals, armoring to protect especially vulnerable sections of levee from scouring, construction of 23 miles of new levee in Plaquemines Parish, restoration of coastal wetlands and ecosystems especially hard-hit by Katrina, and "storm-proofing" individual pump stations.Let's just hope that these projects aren't going to built up to the standards of the 17th Street Canal.