Improvements at Poole’s Bluff under way

Published 3:23 pm Sunday, November 30, 2014

Washington Parish Director of Public Works Leo Lucchesi said construction and beautification projects at Poole’s Bluff Nature Park are taking shape.

Parish officials are currently working on a nature trail and trail walkways. A fishing pier is scheduled to be the final major element of construction at the park. It will be located on the north end and will be handicapped accessible. Officials recently completed the gazebo except for some landscaping touches.

“We are going to have permanent restrooms, bike racks and more landscaping,” Lucchesi said. “Most of the lighting concentration will be on the gazebo by the boat launch area where most of the activity is.”

Regarding the nature trail that is under construction, Lucchesi said a 450-foot concrete walkway is being run from the gazebo to the existing veterans monument. He said concrete is slated to be poured on Monday, and the walkway should be completed in a matter of weeks. The walkway was constructed with the possibility of flooding from the Pearl River in mind.

“We made sure we planned ahead on the level of the walkway to stay ahead of the flood stage,” Lucchesi said. “We designed it to be above flood stage.”

Lucchesi said workers recently cleared riverbanks of debris in an effort to prevent erosion. He said officials drove the first piling into the embankment one day last week before work began on the fishing pier.

Much of the labor for the project is being done by a crew from Rayburn Correctional Center. Lucchesi said he is grateful to RCC warden Robert Tanner and his staff for their participation on the project.

The Poole’s Bluff Nature Project is being funded by an $89,300 federal Recreational Trails Program Grant administered through the Louisiana Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism, along with a $25,000 grant from Parkway Pipeline.