Monroe residents near sewer project frustrated by delays

One family says the project is putting more strangers on their street and increasing crime
Published: Aug. 16, 2022 at 6:53 PM CDT
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MONROE, La. (KNOE) - Community members say they are frustrated in Monroe’s south side, and some residents say it’s due to the lack of progress on an emergency sewer repair.

Residents on Mouton Ave. say someone fired shots near a bus stop this morning and they believe it’s because more people are detoured into their neighborhood due to a sewer project that started last year.

Lakendra Harris is a Wossman student and she says someone fired shots near the bus stop earlier today but no one was hurt.

“Unfortunately, someone who decided to stop in front of me look at me as crazy, and basically he started shooting and then keeps going and start shooting again,” Harris said.

Harris and her brother, Cameron Jones, say the closed roads forced them to walk a different route.

“I got to walk from South Grande to Jackson Street, every morning or evening. Then I got to cut through people’s yards because the construction stuff is in the middle of the road. It’s unsafe because they have no trespassing on their windows,” said Jones.

Bat Jones, Harris’ and Jones’ father, says construction crews have been working for more than a year and he’s ready for the project to end.

“I can’t constantly take him every morning because I have younger kids that I have to wait and put on the bus,” Bat Jones said. “I would love the City to treat this area as if it was the area over there behind the Bayou Desiard Country Club, over there off of loop road.”

Construction has yet to end due to a delay caused by location issues.

“The plan was to attach to an existing location but there’s basically nothing to attach to,” said Morgan McCallister, the City of Monroe engineer.

He says the city found no way to connect the existing lines, so now they are rerouting to another pipe on a different street.

“So, the $1.2 million change order is going to be a bypass of that area that cannot be changed, fixed, or connected to. So we are going to fill that entire section of sewer main and it will be fixed,” McCallister says.

McCallister says this is a large project that could take another year to complete, and the total cost will be around $14 million.

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