Local leaders celebrate completion of the Spanish Pass Project

Louisiana Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA), along with local and state officials, have celebrated the completion of the largest ridge and marsh restoration effort in Louisiana – the Spanish Pass Project.

Photo courtesy of CPRA

“We’re standing on what was once open water and is now nearly 2,000 acres of restored marsh and ridge. Through record breaking projects and largest-ever levels of investment, we’ve set ourselves apart from our peers and brought Louisiana to the forefront of the fight against coastal land loss,” Gov. John Bel Edwards said during the ribbon-cutting ceremony.

The Spanish Pass Project restored over six miles of ridge west of Venice, La. and built over 1,670 acres of marsh with nearly 11 million cubic yards of sediment, making it the largest marsh and ridge creation project by both acres built and volume dredged.

“Protecting and restoring Louisiana’s coast requires bold action and ambitious projects like Spanish Pass,” CPRA Chairman Chip Kline added. “We must build on this momentum and fight for the funding that will allow us to continue pursuing large, transformational projects.”

Photo courtesy of CPRA

The Spanish Pass Project was first identified as a priority project in the 2017 Coastal Master Plan. The total project cost is $100.2 million, and it is funded with Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill settlement funds implemented through the Natural Resource Damage Assessment Act (NRDA) and distributed by the Louisiana Trustee Implementation Group (LA TIG).

The project utilized a borrow source on the east bank of the Mississippi River. The project team coordinated closely with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Coast Guard, and River Pilot organizations to lay the dredge pipe across the River and subsequently the navigational canal to ensure were no disruptions to navigation for the duration of the project.