Neighborhood says work increases flooding

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Monday, March 12, 2012 - 9:10pm

As the rains come down, the flood waters rise over Historic Old South Baton Rouge..

"Water is staying wherever the rain falls," said Cynthia Jones, with the South Baton Rouge Civic Association. "Staying right there."

The area in between West McKinley and West Roosevelt is low lying, and prone to flooding. A drainage project underway is supposed to alleviate the problem, but residents said since the project began nearly two years ago, that the situation has actually gotten worse.

"Water used to stop at Illinois and W Garfield," Jones said. "Now it goes to Indiana Street."

One elderly woman -- who didn't want to be interviewed -- had to put out sandbags, trying to keep the water back. She said water's gotten inside her home several times before.

Department of Public Works admits that the project is way behind schedule. Unforeseen problems dealing with underground fiber optic cables and relocating the existing sewer lines caused some of the setbacks. They said the project is now back on track.

Residents just want the work to finish, the construction signs removed, and the eyesores to disappear.

"We want to make sure when they finish the drainage that the water will not come back on us like it is now," Jones said.

DPW said the project should be complete within 60 days.

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