POSTED: Saturday, April 13, 2013 - 10:00am
UPDATED: Saturday, April 13, 2013 - 10:04am
PLAQUEMINES PARISH, LA — The Grand Liard Marsh and Ridge Restoration Project started last month in Plaquemines Parish. The project will increase storm protection in the Barataria Basin. It is estimated to cost $42.5 million with $42 million already funded by the National Marine Fisheries Service and the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority.
The Grand Liard Marsh is located in the Barataria Basin portion of Plaquemines Parish and was historically structured by a series of bayous and ridges. In the past, a majority of the bayou ridges and marshes in this area have disappeared at a rate 3.3 percent a year. Studies suggest that without the restoration project the remaining wetlands will be completely converted to open water by 2050.
The project is expected to create approximately 328 acres of marsh and nourish an additional 140 acres of existing marsh. 50 percent of the created marsh will be planted upon construction with plugs of smooth cordgrass and the entire ridge will be planted with woody vegetation. High marsh species will also be planted on the slopes of the ridge.
The project was approved for full engineering and design in 2009 and is expected to be completed in the summer of 2014.
“Projects like this are so important to Plaquemines Parish. It allows us to tell our residents that storm protection is getting better every year not worse,” said Plaquemines Parish President Billy Nungesser.