Sunday, February 10, 2008

From bayous to artificial whitewater parks?


It's been done elsewhere, even in flat places like our own. The above photos were taken in South Bend, Indiana. Their facility is used for world-class competitions and training. Maybe this would provide the incentive we may need to construct what we already need to help solve our low water pressure problems in the city.

The picture below is an artificial course at the United States National Whitewater Center.

Sure does look like some of our bayous, minus the current and rocks. You'd think we'd have access to enough water from the Red River to do this, and while pressure could be issue for our plumbing, other places have used damns, or "weirs," to create the current.

Wikipedia has some info on the different kinds of courses and channels that have been constructed.

Below is a list of artificial whitewater courses for canoe, kayak, and raft around the country, either existing. (source: www.trailsrus.com/whitewater/otherparks.html)

ARTIFICIAL CHANNEL - EXISTING

East Race - St. Joseph River

South Bend

IN

Dickerson Whitewater Course

Dickerson

MD

Lock 32 Erie Canal

Pittsford

NY

ARTIFICIAL CHANNEL - PLANNED

Adventure Sports Center International

Wisp-McHenry

MD

Mississippi River

Minneapolis

MN

Catawba River - U.S. National Whitewater Center

Charlotte

NC

ARTIFICIAL CHANNEL - PROPOSED

Arkansas Whitewater Park

Fayetteville

AR

Susquehanna River

Havre de Grace

MD

Columbia Canal

Columbia

SC

POSSIBLE PROJECTS - UNCONFIRMED

Feather River

Oroville

CA

Inglis

FL

Cedar River (Shell Rock, Waverly, Cedar Falls and Waterloo)

Peoria

IL

StreamTeach, Inc.

St. Louis

MO

Williamsport

PA

Park City

UT

Word is that our own "Bayou Chapter" of the Ozark Society has proposed constructing something like this for us. You go, paddlers!

3 comments:

Matt said...

I'm interested by the information and ideas here on your blog. I agree it's a shame that some of interesting bayous and waterways in Shreveport are fenced off and that the city seems so keen of eliminating public swimming in Natural settings or simply roaping off sections of our city for "our own good" and safety.

Have you looked into any of the steps to having more parks and water recreational areas created or petitioned?

Rob Gaudet said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rob Gaudet said...

Wow great blog. Did you know that in 2001 the Bossier parish police jury paid a firm to develop a master plan for the city?

There was a significant portion dedicated to taking advantage of the areas natural resources, creating trails, parks etc. Here is short snippet from the proposal

----------------
The overall goal for Bossier’s
parks and recreation system is
to identify, protect, and
enhance the natural and
built environments and the
image of Bossier by providing
a diverse blend of parks and
open spaces, creating
recreational opportunities,
and preserving irreplaceable
natural resources that
contribute to Bossier’s rich
heritage.
----------------

The entire master plan is still online, here is the Natural Resources portion. http://www.bossiercity.org/DEPT/mpc/final_plan/PDFs/Chapter%206%20-%20Natural%20Resources,%20Parks%20and%20Open%20Space.pdf

Here is a link to the entire plan.
http://www.bossiercity.org/DEPT/mpc/final_plan/bossier_final_plan.html

What are the possibilities of resurrecting the original plan?