Project Spotlight: Louisiana Coastal Protection & Restoration Authority and US Fish & Wildlife Services Partnership – New Orleans Landbridge Shoreline Stabilization and Marsh Creation (PO-169)

The New Orleans Landbridge Shoreline Stabilization & Marsh creation project will address over 100 acres of land loss on the Eastern shore of Lake Pontchartrain.

For 31 years, CWPPRA has provided the only joint Federal/State coastal restoration effort with a predictable and recurring funding stream designed to restore the vanishing wetlands of coastal Louisiana. The Louisiana Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority is our state cost-share partner and works with each of the five federal agencies to design, plan, and construct coastal restoration projects. As the local cost-share partner, CPRA matches 15% of CWPPRA’s federal funding. CWPPRA serves as a project mill for the State and other restoration programs. With project design completed by CWPPRA, other entities have a jump start on meeting their restoration goals while conserving limited financial resources.​

Q: What is the name of the project, and where is it located? 

A: New Orleans Landbridge Shoreline Stabilization and Marsh Creation (PO-169).

The project is located in the Lake Pontchartrain Basin in Orleans Parish along U.S. Highway 90 (Chef Menteur Hwy) and near Lake Saint Catherine.  The Rigolets is immediately north of the project area. 

Q: What was the timeline for this project (start date – completion date)? 

A: The project was authorized by CWPPRA for Phase I Engineering and Design as part of Priority Project List (PPL) #24 in January, 2015.  The project was approved for Phase 2 funding in January, 2019.  The project was advertised for construction on June 18, 2021 and was awarded on August 13, 2021 (to Magnolia Dredge & Dock, LLC). The currently anticipated construction completion date is in Q4 of 2022.

Q: How many acres of wetland does this project benefit/create? 

A: The PO-169 project will create and nourish 253 acres of brackish marsh and will stabilize roughly three miles of shoreline along the U.S. Highway 90 corridor.   

Q: What is most important/impactful about this project? 

A: This project will stabilize the shoreline to reduce shoreline erosion and interior marsh loss; maintain integrity of the East Orleans Landbridge and Lakes Pontchartrain and Borgne; protect fish and wildlife trust resources dependent on these marsh habitats, particularly at-risk species and species of conservation concern; and provide protection to a major hurricane evacuation route.  The vital wetland habitat to be restored exists in the vicinity of the New Orleans East Landbridge Restoration complex (001.MC.05, as shown in the 2017 Master Plan), which will work in tandem with future restoration efforts pursued in the area as part of the Coastal Master Plan.  
In addition from the USFWS, “The restoration and protection of these marshes protects a critical hurricane evacuation route for New Orleans. The project will also help maintain the integrity of Lakes Pontchartrain and Borgne, preventing the coalescence, or merging, of these two large lakes.”

Q: Is there anything unique about this project you would like to bring attention to? 

A: One of the main features of this project is an innovative approach to shoreline stabilization, which is somewhat different than past shoreline protection or combined shoreline protection/marsh creation projects constructed by CPRA or implemented through the CWPPRA program. PO-0169 will be one of the first projects to utilize articulated concrete mat (ACM) armored containment dikes for shoreline stabilization at this scale. 

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