The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Vicksburg District, in coordination with the Corps’ St. Paul District, deployed the dredge Dubuque in August to perform critical dredging on the Ouachita-Black River.
The dredge removed shoaling in the navigation channel caused by significant high-water events on the Ouachita-Black River during 2019. This effort allowed the waterway to remain open to commercial navigation.
The Ouachita-Black River is an inland navigation river system that begins at the confluence of the Red and Black rivers.
The deployment of Dubuque on the Ouachita-Black River follows the opening of Columbia Lock and Dam, located approximately seven miles upstream of Columbia, Louisiana, on the Ouachita River. The lock had been closed since July 2018 due to emergency repairs and elevated river stages. The Vicksburg District completed critical repairs and opened the lock to commercial traffic on August 1. Dredging of the Ouachita-Black River allows the navigation channel at Columbia Lock and Dam to remain operational during normal pool stage, which is 52 feet.
The dredging also allows more than 400 barges of rock to be delivered to Monroe, Louisiana, where the rock will be placed at multiple locations to improve the stability of the riverbank near the Monroe floodwall.