Caernarvon Canal Floodwall

New Orleans, LA

Overcoming many obstacles, Conti completed the last segment of this huge flood wall 30% ahead of schedule to bring New Orleans levees up to the 100-year flood protection level before the next hurricane season.

In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) set out to complete the Hurricane Storm Damage Risk Reduction System, bringing New Orleans levees up to the 100-year flood protection level. This program entailed an epic scope of engineering rarely seen to construct 350 miles of taller, stronger floodwalls. Conti delivered the last contract awarded, the Lake Pontchartrain and Vicinity 149 Project, as the final link in this network of levees.

Conti was the self-perform contractor for this milestone project which included building an enormous floodwall along the Caernarvon Canal with ties into the Mississippi River levee, the largest highway roller gate in the LPV system, a massive in-water sector gate across the canal and a railroad swing gate. The project was on a virgin swamp in an active environment with busy rail, vehicular and maritime traffic.

With zero room for error, Conti and USACE collaborated in a model partnership with local businesses to work at an extremely rapid pace. The team constructed 56 T-wall structures 30 days ahead of schedule, installed the railroad shoofly in a record-breaking 14 days and worked 24/7 for over 80% of the project to meet the June deadline in 11 months instead of 16 months, shaving off nearly 30% of the schedule. Conti also used 3D modeling to assess space conflicts in the sector gate design.

The team completed the project on budget with 182,000 work hours and zero lost time injuries, receiving numerous industry awards for excellence.

This critical project earned Conti Engineering News-Record's Best Project of the Year, Merit Award for Civil Infrastructure, ABC New Orleans' Award of Excellence, USACE Mississippi Valley Commander's Coin and USACE New Orleans' Superior Safety performance award for no lost time incidents.

Project details

Client USACE New Orleans
Value $55.3M
Status Completed
Key features
  • Constructed 28-foot high, 1,700-foot long T-wall floodwall
  • Constructed 56-ton, 58-foot wide highway floodgate
  • Constructed 28-ton railroad swing gate
  • Completed design and fabricated 190-ton, 56-foot wide in-water sector gate using 3D modeling
  • Constructed levee tie-in to concurrent projects
  • Completed 100-year flood protection system
  • Used hurricane contingency plans

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