Paper mill project aims to mask plant from passing traffic

Published 11:17 am Wednesday, June 18, 2014

To make the front entrance of the International Paper, Bogalusa Mill, more appealing to the general public, the company is in the midst of a $500,000 project to replace the chain-link fence surrounding the property.

The project also included planting 30 trees and 12 plants, which are easily visible from the Columbia Street-Willis Avenue intersection. The project is in its third phase.

“The project out there is really just an aesthetic project. It’s all about improving the look of the mill,” Bogalusa Mill Communications Manager Kalisa Hyman said. “That is a busy intersection out there.”

Nobles Construction Co., of Bogalusa was contacted out to erect the approximately 1,700-linear foot fence. Construction on the new fencing began in January. The project is expected to be completed next month.

Landscaping included planting pine and cypress trees.

“The idea was as the trees mature, the operation won’t be as visible from the road,” Hyman said. “The landscaping will give the plant a more attractive look. That’s an unusual situation to have for a mill that is situated in the middle of town. We believe it adds to the town to have a more attractive front of the mill.”

Hyman said IP wants to continue its good working relationship with the city.

“International Paper is very happy to be in Bogalusa and wants to contribute to the town,” Hyman said. “The one thing we can do is make the mill a place everyone can be proud of. IP is putting a lot of money into improving operation of the mill, but we also want the mill to look nice as well.”

Joe Kavanaugh is foreman on the fence project, which he estimated at 2,500 feet. He said each section of the new fence is constructed of 2×10 and 2×6 lumber with stainless steel bolts to hold up the fence. Crewmen on Monday included Gerald Dillon, Carlos Dillon, B.K. Greely and Shane Jarrell.

Lee Dillon is IP’s project manager.