The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Vicksburg District, in coordination with the USACE St. Paul District, is deploying the Dredge Dubuque to perform critical dredging on the Ouachita-Black River in Louisiana starting in late August.
The dredge will remove shoaling in the navigation channel caused by significant high-water events on the Ouachita-Black River during 2019. This effort will allow the waterway to remain open to commercial navigation.
The Ouachita-Black River is an inland navigation river system that begins at the confluence of the Red and Black rivers.
The deployment of Dredge Dubuque on the Ouachita-Black River follows the recent opening of Columbia Lock and Dam, located approximately seven miles upstream of Columbia, Louisiana, on the Ouachita River. The lock had been closed since July 2018 due to emergency repairs and elevated river stages. The Vicksburg District completed critical repairs and opened the lock to commercial traffic Aug. 1.
Columbia Lock and Dam to remain open
Dredging of the Ouachita-Black River will allow the navigation channel at Columbia Lock and Dam to remain operational during normal pool stage, which is 52 feet.
The dredging performed by Dredge Dubuque will also allow more than 400 barges of rock to be delivered to Monroe, where the rock will be placed at multiple locations to improve the stability of the river bank near the Monroe floodwall.
"This critical dredging effort is an example of successful intra-agency collaboration," said Vicksburg District Deputy Commander Maj. Frank DuVerger. "Maintaining navigable conditions along our waterways is one of the Vicksburg District's top priorities, and we are honored to have the St. Paul District's support."
The Vicksburg District encompasses a 68,000-square-mile area across portions of Mississippi, Arkansas and Louisiana that holds seven major river basins and incorporates approximately 460 miles of mainline levees. The district is engaged in hundreds of projects and employs about 1,100 personnel.