City goes out for bid on first phases of Mississippi River levee walking/biking trail

Staff Report

The City of Plaquemine has gone out for bid on Phases 1 and 2 of the Plaquemine Riverfront Recreational Trail – the Mississippi River levee-top trail that will extend from the North Plaquemine Park to almost the Plaquemine ferry landing when complete.

The first two phases of the Riverfront Recreational Trail.

Phases 1 and 2 include the construction of the trailhead next to the Plaquemine Lock State Historic Site and the extension of the trail to the North Plaquemine Park. Phases 3 and 4, which are expected to bid in November or December, extends the trail to the south near the ferry landing and also includes lighting the entire trail and other amenities.

Phases 1 and 2 of the project are expected to cost $531,000, and the entire project is expected to cost $1.3 million. The city has obtained grants of $1,139,000 for various phases, but has a 20 percent match on the grants. The match cannot include professional engineering/consulting fees.

The city will open bids for Phases 1 and 2 on May 10 and the City Board of Selectmen are expected to vote on whether to accept the low bid at its meeting on May 11. Provided the bids are in line, the project should begin by late June.

This step has been a long time in coming. Mayor Edwin “Ed” Reeves, Jr. initiated the levee trail project when he took office in 2017. Once the city developed the master plan for the walking and biking trail, it has taken three years to get all of the federal and state permits and approvals necessary for construction. During that time, the City managed to get three grants to fund a good portion of the project.

 “We are thrilled to have reached this point and are very anxious to get this project underway,” Reeves said. “Our residents want walking trails and we have provided them at our parks, but it’s hard to beat a Mississippi River view!”