Why is a Levee System necessary?
The recorded Storm Surge in Iberia Parish for Category 3 Hurricane Rita in 2005 was 9’. Strong Category 2 Hurricane’s Ike and Gustav in 2008 were a little less but had similar damage and inundation affects. In all cases we were spared from the worst storm surge that these storms produced with the high surge going west for all three storms. In comparison Category 5 Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans with a 13’–15’ storm surge. The coast of Mississippi was hit with a 27’ storm surge that penetrated more than 12 miles inland. Imagine what Iberia Parish would have looked like if any of these storms would have hit us directly…..
Levee System Protection
The Acadiana region; Lafayette, New Iberia and Abbeville have been recognized by the State Master Plan as having the highest concentrations of assets values. The plan recommends that our area receive a greater than 100 year level of protection.
This means the construction of levee systems. Levee’s will be built along the marsh and crop field interface to protect the parish at an approximate elevation of 18’ in the western part of the parish gradually lowering to 14’ in the eastern part of the parish. Levee’s of this height would have a foot print of approximately 100’ wide at the base.
Spoil Banks along the Intracoastal Waterway need to be refortified as they have deteriorated in recent years.
Benefits of Levee Protection
Maintain/Lower Insurance Rates
Reduce Construction Cost
Sustain agricultural lands
Invites Commercial and Industrial Development
Increases Job Opportunity
Increases Tax Base
Increases Property Values
Increases Tax Revenue to all Government Bodies
Maintain our Cultural and Heritage Value