Parish considering industrial road near floodwall in Morgan City
MORGAN CITY, La. — A desire to keep large trucks moving through the residential area of Barrow Street in Morgan City is the main reason that St. Mary Parish is working to construct an industrial road near the floodwall.
Henry “Bo” LaGrange, parish chief administrative, said the road would extend eastward from the foot of Second Street to the foot of Federal Avenue and extend eastward to the road used by the port.
“Right now, the trucks may come and cross the track on Federal Avenue and turn on Barrow Street to get to Second Street,” LaGrange said.
With the new road, “they’ll be able to go all the way up Federal to be able to access the industries,” he said.
Morgan City Mayor Tim Matte said, “the primary interest in constructing the Industrial Road is to remove trucks from Barrow Street, which passes through a residential area.”
LaGrange said that the parish is still in the process of acquiring parts of the right of way.
“We are going to file suit to acquire the right of way on four parcels of land for road,” he said. “There are four parcels we are expropriating. The others are willing to sell.”
The major landowners in the area are the BNSF Railway and the Union Pacific Railway, which jointly own the land where the original “loop track” was, which turned around trains and railroad equipment when Morgan City was the western terminus of the New Orleans, Opelousas and Great Western Railway. The BNSF Railway acquired the east-west railroad line across southern Louisiana via Lafayette and Morgan City upon the Union Pacific Railway’s 1996 purchase of the Southern Pacific Railway.
The proposed “Morgan City Industrial Road” would follow the right of way of the former loop track.
In addition to the railroad companies, other landowners needed for the road are the Morgan City Harbor and Terminal District, Derwin Hebert Sr. and Patrice Hebert, M C Property Holdings LLC, Dean Ledet, Docilia Lockette, Beatrice Curtis, Hannah Williams and the estate of Hattie W. Walls. The parcels owned by the latter four owners, LaGrange said, are those that the parish is in the process of expropriating.
Matte said that “Baker Hughes and Newpark would be the primary users” of the proposed road.