Tom Jackson | April 26, 2012

Louisiana storm surge barrier takes top global honors


The two mile barrier is designed to withstand a 100-year storm-surge event.

The Lake Borgne Surge Barrier–a two-mile tall, 26-foot tall concrete and steel bulkwark against hurricanes and floodwaters, has been named the world’s most outstanding engineering achievement for 2012.

Built in response to the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina, the $1.1 billion barrier’s primary designer was a joint venture between Ben C. Gerwick, Inc., and INCA, (now Tetra Tech INCA). It moves New Orleans’  first line of defense against catastrophic storms more than 12 miles out from downtown, and is considered a model for floodgate and floodwall design world wide.

More than 600 people attended the black-tie 46th Annual Engineering Excellence Awards Gala last week in Washington D.C. where the award was announced. The competition is sponsored by the American Council of Engineering Companies and recognized 147 engineering achievements throughout the world.

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