YOUNGSVILLE, La. (KLFY) — The City of Youngsville was hit hard during the flood of 2016. Before the historic rain event, the city developed a master plan in 2015 including the construction of the LaSalle regional drainage pond.
“It’s a huge milestone for the citizens of Youngsville,” said Mayor Ken Ritter. “This 24 acres will represent a regional drainage pond which is going to drain a large majority of our community.”
The property is located off of South Larrievere Road. Just for some perspective, to the lower right is Southside High School. On the left here is the Highland Ridge subdivision. The mayor says this property where the drainage pond will be built is prime location.
The pond will be about 20 acres wide and 12 feet deep. When neighborhoods drain to the coolies in Youngsville, that water will be diverted to the pond to store until downstream can handle water, which will be pumped out of the pond.
“This will help to drain what I called the east side of Youngsville, all of the developments that are east of Highway 89,” said Youngsville City Engineer Pamela Granger. “Cooley LaSalle will drain into this detention pond. We have been wanting to reconstruct the Riviera road. That is primary access to the new Southside High School and it’s a very narrow road, this will give us an outlet for our drainage so it makes that project possible as well as fulfilling what we need with our rain events for the local area.”
Granger says because they had a plan before the 2016 flood, they applied for funding through FEMA, and currently 75% of the total cost is funded by the state and federal government.
“We wouldn’t be able to do it without help from federal and state funding,” said Granger. “When we put it in the master plan it was a very high-ticket item. We had to detention ponds more than $8 million, and we’re fortunate to have more than $10 million that’s going to be reimbursed to the city for these ponds. So, we’re glad to have them as partners and glad to finally see what we had in our planning and come true.”
Design plans are currently 70% complete now that property has been purchased. Construction is anticipated to start by the beginning of hurricane season of 2021.