Locks and Dams

Harvey Canal Lock To Reopen December 17

Following minor delays both at the lock and a nearby drawbridge, the Harvey Canal Lock is set to reopen to navigation December 17. The lock closed on September 6 for what was initially forecast to be a 60-day closure.

During the closure, the lock’s miter gates have been totally refurbished. Other work has included the fabrication of new turnbuckles at the gates, replacement of operating machinery for one of the gates, removal of mooring bitts no longer used, replacement of pintle balls and concrete expansion joints in the chamber, and installation of new lighting.

Victor Landry, Gulf Intracoastal Waterway operations manager for the New Orleans Engineer District, said fabricating new turnbuckles for the lock was somewhat of a surprise. When the closure got underway, workers at the lock discovered minor cracks in the turnbuckles. Though not major, Landry said he wanted to err on the side of caution.

“We figured, while we’re doing everything, let’s go ahead and fabricate new ones,” Landry said.

The Corps will dewater the lock a final time December 9 in order to install the new turnbuckles. After that, the Corps will require one additional week to complete work on the fendering system and guidewall approaches underneath and adjacent to the 4th Street Bridge.

The Corps coordinated the lock closure with the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development, which has been performing repairs on the nearby 4th Street Bridge. Work at the bridge has prevented Corps divers from accessing the area underneath the bridge, hence the additional week needed to complete fendering and guidewall work.

“I truly appreciated everyone’s patience and understanding during the Harvey Lock dewatering, as the scope and schedule has extended beyond our original expectations,” Landry said.

Until Harvey reopens on December 17, Algiers Lock remains the alternate point of access between the Mississippi River and the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway.