Local creek restoration, new lake planned for completion in 2022

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A Louisiana company has been hired for the cleanup effort of Departee Creek in Independence County with a new lake planned for completion in 2022.

The project has been a long time in getting to the cleanup effort. The Departee Creek Watershed Improvement District was formed in 1992 for the purpose of restoring Departee Creek to its natural state and constructing a flood prevention structure and a 188-acre lake upstream from farm and pasture land. Working with the Natural Resource Conservation Service, a plan was developed and approved in 2000.

Surveys and engineering studies were performed from that point until 2010, but funding for the project remained a challenge. It was not until 2017 that Congress restored funding for these type projects, and Departee Creek was one of two such projects funded in the entire state.

The Departee Creek project is two-phase, and its estimated completion is sometime in 2022 when construction of the lake should be finished. The approximate location of the dam and lake is roughly a quarter-mile south of State Highway 157 in the Blackland area, and approximately three miles west of Thida.

For more information, you can visit the Independence County Conservation District’s website: independenceccd.com.

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