Work on the long-awaited flood protection system for Lake Trail Drive residents is 95 percent complete and should be ready to become operational by April 25, 2017, according to Kenner city officials. Lake Trail Drive was one of the first streets developed in North Kenner and was developed lower than other adjacent streets in the neighborhood.
The result was that rainstorms frequently flooded the street and occasionally the homes that paralleled it. Kenner Assistant Public Works Director Bill Duplaisir said the $1.3 million project in northeast Kenner includes two drainage pumps, an emergency generator and work on the existing roadway.
“This was a very expensive project, which included considerable engineering work,” said Duplaisir. “We know the folks on Lake Trail Drive have been waiting for this for over 20 years. Give a lot of credit to the city officials and state legislators who went through the complex capital outlay process to get a state grant that paid for three-fourths of the project. The balance was paid with capital budget funding from the city, approved by the city council.”
Kenner District 3 Councilman Keith Reynaud provided district funds for the extensive engineering work and part of Phase 1, which entailed stopping water runoff from the lakefront levee onto Lake Trail Drive. “A lot of entities were involved and worked together to make this happen, including the U.S. Corps of Engineers and the East Jefferson Levee District as well as the Jefferson Drainage Department,” said Councilman Reynaud. “Jose Gonzalez, the former Kenner Public Works Director, who is now Jefferson Parish Public Works Director, was heavily involved in this project and I give him credit for making this project happen.
Mike Quigley, Kenner’s former chief administrative officer was instrumental in helping begin the process of getting the initial capital outlay money.” State Senator Danny Martiny and state Representative Julie Stokes managed the capital outlay process to get funding through Louisiana’s Legislative Capital Outlay program. “This represents the largest amount of capital outlay dollars received by the city of Kenner from the state in the last twelve years,” said Councilman Reynaud. “City officials who also played key roles in getting the funds for the pumping station were former Mayor Michael S. Yenni – now Jefferson Parish president – and Kenner Councilman Reynaud,” said Representative Stokes. “It was a team effort. Mayor Yenni and Councilman Reynaud were very helpful.
Many of the residents on Lake Trail Drive said that they have needed a pumping station for 20 years. We’re glad the waiting is finally coming to an end and are glad we were finally able to address this chronic and serious need.” The work, started in April 2016, has been done by Global Industrial Construction.
Duplaisir says their contract calls for an April 25 completion date and they are on schedule to be finished by then. “The contractor is in progress of working on finishing up the roadway repair portion of the project, adding a guardrail and placing a secure fence around the pumping station,” said Duplaisir. “I’m sure that when we cut the ribbon for the dedication of the pumping station there will be a celebration on Lake Trail Drive.” Senator Martiny said many citizens and Kenner Council members contributed over the years to the civic and governmental push that finally culminated in the state grant that made the pumping station possible.
“It has truly been a long haul and everyone who contributed to this outcome has a right to feel very proud that this project is finally going to be completed,” Martiny said. “The Lake Trail project has been a long and lengthy process and we are all glad to have helped to finally fix a very serious problem for our residents,” said Councilman Reynaud.