Article from the Plaquemines Gazette

By Jason Browne

Brad Barth, standing, the Coastal Protection & Restoration Authority’s operations assist administrator for the proposed Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion, and Andy Johansson, Director Hydraulic Modeling at Alden Lab, crouching, observe a 1:65 scale model of the diversion that takes up most of a 300-foot by 90-foot building in Holden, Mass. Alden built two huge models, one of the Mississippi River and one of the outfall in Barataria Bay, to study how the diversion will perform. 


The Coastal Protection & Restoration Authority’s proposed $1.3 billion Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion in Plaquemines Parish has proven endlessly controversial, so the CPRA commissioned two gigantic models of the structure in Massachusetts to make sure the diversion will work the way they think it will.

Brad Barth, CPRA’s operations assist administrator for the Mid-Barataria and Mid-Breton Sediment Diversions, was in Holden, Mass., earlier this month visiting a 200-foot-long model of the Mississippi River, complete with the entrance to the diversion conveyance channel, and a 100-foot-long model of the exit from the conveyance channel, complete with outfall into Barataria basin.


Andy Johansson, Director of Hydraulic Modeling at Alden Lab observes a 1:65 scale model of the Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion constructed in Holden, Mass

The 1:65 scale models were constructed by Alden Lab, the same company that built the 10,000-square-foot model of the lower Mississippi River for LSU’s Center for River Studies in Baton Rouge. And Barth said CPRA plans to tap Alden again after testing is completed for the Barataria diversion to build models for the Breton diversion.

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