By Morgan Lawrence
While the Corps of Engineers’ plan to expand the industrial canal was recently reinvigorated, members of A Community Voice who reside in the upper and lower 9th ward, began organizing to fight against it. The protest will begin at 10:00 a.m. this Saturday April 29 at Forstall on 4800 St. Claude Street (by the bridge).
The mistake by the Corps with the design and execution of walls at the industrial canal, which resulted in the subsequent flooding of the city, is fresh on the group’s minds. Plus, problems from 13 years of heavy construction, pile-driving, dust, traffic issues, relentless noise, safety problems from simultaneously having both bridges up caused no access by police, fire, ambulances and delays for workers and parents.
Still, Vanessa Gueringer, of A Community Voice, a group of at least two dozen residents who oppose the projects, said a lock expansion has been proposed for years, while the Florida Avenue changes would force hundreds of people out of their homes. But nearby residents have for decades claimed the project will cause environmental hazards and leave homes more vulnerable to flooding, which will depress property values.
Members of A Community Voice will be on hand to urge Councilman at Large, Jason Williams, to ensure that the City of New Orleans will take an interest in the potential problems associated with the expansion in hopes of traveling up to Congress and the state of Louisiana.
Vanessa stated “the ultimate goal of the protest is to unify the community beyond the neighborhood.” She also noted the group was successful in getting the Corps of Engineers to put their protest on record and demanding they relocate the canal to unpopulated area in St. Bernard Parish.
For more information, contact Secretary of A Community Voice, Vanessa Gueringer at 504-941-2852.