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Collapsed concrete concerns, subject of man's complaints for decade

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UPDATE: Thursday, the City-Parish was quick to respond. Heavy machinery helped to dig out debris from Lively Bayou, unblocking the path of water flow. The parish still plans to address a collapsed concrete panel, but says the integrity of the structure is sound.

BATON ROUGE - Some residents living in Sherwood Forest are expressing concern over a large box culvert bridge that's showing signs of wear and tear.

Len Sedlin reached out to 2 On Your Side about his concerns over debris and crumbling concrete.

"There's chronic blockage of flow right here," Sedlin said.

In Sherwood Forest flowing under Goodwood Boulevard is Lively Bayou. Sedlin says it needs the parish's attention.

"It's totally destroyed by just lack of maintenance," he said.

He's not wrong, it is pretty much destroyed. The concrete has collapsed on one of the side panels next to the bridge. The dirt underneath has washed away. Sedlin worries it'll affect the integrity of the bridge. He's one of the thousands of people who has flooded in south Louisiana in the last few years and he doesn't want that to happen again.

"This whole bridge assembly is collapsing in time," he said. "We just didn't want to see this continue to happen through what I saw is a lack of coherent program on the part of the City-Parish to maintain its infrastructure."

Sedlin says he's been contacting the city-parish with his concerns for at least a decade. His records show that he has an open work order dated August 3, 2020. He says it's been addressed in the sense that the debris has been cleared a couple of times, but the concrete crumbling has not been.

Last week, 2 On Your Side asked him why he thought that might be.

"Well, they have no program in mind," he said. "I'm just a citizen trying to protect not only my property but what's left of the neighborhood here."

As the months have gone by, Sedlin says there's even more work to do. He thinks it didn't have to be this way if the parish had answered his work order in the first place.

"Had there been consistent preventative maintenance, which is normal in the industry, the problem could have been abated a long time ago."

The City-Parish says the vegetation obstruction, at this point, is minor. It will be cleared away as soon as possible. This boxed culvert is a major outfall for the neighborhood and is checked and maintained regularly, particularly before large storm events.

The parish also says it has looked into Sedlin's concerns about the crumbling concrete and confirmed that the bayou bank integrity is still in tact and is stable. It may be adding additional stone to prevent further erosion, which has been implemented in other areas of the parish.


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