CALENDAR OF EVENTS as of April 11, 2017
4/11/2017

CALENDAR OF EVENTS
1/9/2017

REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS FOR GRAND ECORE RV PARK OPERATOR
10/19/2016

Bass fingerlings released into Red River
10/13/2016

Alexandria Levee Park boat ramp now open to public
9/1/2016

Temporary ramp closure on Red River in Caddo Parish
9/1/2016

STATUS OF RED RIVER BOAT RAMPS: as of August 19, 2016
8/19/2016

Red River Waterway Commission reopens two boat ramps in Shreveport and Bossier
7/1/2016

RED RIVER: Status of Boat Ramps as of July 1, 2016
7/1/2016

RED RIVER: Status of Boat Ramps as of June 28, 2016
6/28/2016

Red River Waterway Commission reopens majority of area boat ramps
6/24/2016

RED RIVER: Status of Boat Ramps as of June 24, 2016
6/24/2016

High water temporarily closes boat launches on Red River
6/3/2016

RED RIVER: Status of Boat Ramps as of June 3, 2016
6/3/2016

RED RIVER: Status of Boat Ramps as of June 1, 2016
6/1/2016

RED RIVER: Status of Boat Ramps as of May 26, 2016
5/26/2016

RED RIVER: Status of Boat Ramps as of May 24, 2016
5/24/2016

RED RIVER: Status of Boat Ramps as of May 5, 2016
5/5/2016

Tug Boats on the Mighty Red River
5/3/2016

High water temporarily closes boat launches on Red River
4/22/2016

RED RIVER: Status of Boat Ramps as of April 21, 2016
4/21/2016

RED RIVER: Status of Boat Ramps as of April 15, 2016
4/15/2016

RED RIVER: Status of Boat Ramps as of April 4, 2016
4/4/2016

RED RIVER: Status of Boat Ramps as of March 30, 2016
3/30/2016

Could Captain Shreve foresee Red River as economic engine for region?
3/18/2016

RED RIVER: Status of Boat Ramps as of March 11, 2016
3/11/2016

High water temporarily closes boat launches on Red River
3/10/2016

MARKETING DIRECTOR APPLICATIONS NOW BEING ACCEPTED
2/25/2016

MORE BOAT RAMPS & RECREATION AREA NOW OPEN
2/15/2016

High water temporarily closes boat launches on Red River
12/4/2015

High water temporarily closed some boat launches on Red River
12/1/2015

High water temporarily closes several boat launches in Caddo and Bossier Parish
11/19/2015

Red River Waterway Commission reopens Boyce Recreation Area
11/9/2015

Boyce Recreation Area temporarily closed for maintenance
10/27/2015

Red River Waterway Commission re-opens upstream boat ramp at Stoner Avenue Recreation Area
10/26/2015

Fort Buhlow access road to close temporarily for maintenance
10/11/2015

RED RIVER: STATUS OF BOAT RAMPS - AS OF OCTOBER 5, 2015
10/5/2015

Red River Waterway: Economic Impact Update summary
8/17/2015

RED RIVER: HIGH WATER EVENT 2015
6/5/2015

Red River Waterway Commission closes boat ramps due to high water
5/13/2015

5th Annual Red River Cleanup - Saturday, November 8, 2014
10/8/2014

Port of Alexandria searching for Executive Director
9/8/2014

STAFF ENGINEER APPLICATIONS BEING ACCEPTED
8/12/2014

Vegetation Control Booms installed in Saline Bayou
7/8/2014

Shreveport and Bossier City public boat launches re-opened to public
5/27/2014

The Economic Impact of the Red River Waterway: An Update
5/14/2014

Red River Waterway Commission re-opens boat ramps in Caddo and Bossier parishes
1/2/2014

28,000 bass fingerlings released into Red River
11/25/2013

Red River Waterway Commission exploring alternative approach for giant salvinia
9/27/2013

Red River Waterway Commission approves development of additional disc golf course
8/22/2013

FLW Bass Fishing Championship on Red River August 15th - 18th
8/12/2013

House Concurrent Resolution 109
6/13/2013

Boat ramps in Caddo and Bossier reopened again
6/12/2013

Red River Waterway Commission awards Sci-Port $51,225 for Title I 4th graders in seven parishes to visit Center
5/17/2013

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Public Hearings on Reduced Lock Service
4/2/2013

Benteler Steel/Tube Receives National Recognition
3/15/2013

Texas Kayaker recalls trip down Red River
3/5/2013

First Disc Golf Tournament in Cenla at Lake Buhlow November 10th
10/31/2012

U.S. Rep. Alexander speaks to Rotary Club on value of Red River
8/8/2012

Golf Disc Course opens at Fort Buhlow Recreation Area
6/14/2012

Louisiana ports support more than 396,000 jobs in state, study shows
5/22/2012

Red River makes Bassmaster's top 100
4/25/2012

Red River Waterway Commission re-opens all public boat launches
4/19/2012

Port of Shreveport-Bossier transformer offload
2/27/2012

Louisiana Climbs in Business Climate Ranking
11/4/2011

Northwest LA economy growing: New Jersey - based manufacturer to build facility at Port of Shreveport-Bossier
8/1/2011

Explore the Red River with a free iPhone app.
5/25/2011

Bassmaster Classic 2012
4/27/2011

 

 

 

 

Could Captain Shreve foresee Red River as economic engine for region?

3/18/2016


Could Captain Shreve foresee Red River as economic engine for region?

JIMMY WATSON, JWATSON@SHREVEPORTTIMES.COM 8:59

p.m. CDT March 14, 2016

What began as just a vital food source for Native Americans has transposed into a multi-billion dollar industry for Louisiana with the Red River harnessed into a vital transportation viaduct.

The unique abilities of Captain Henry Miller Shreve, who secured $300,000 from the U.S. Government to clear “The Great Raft” in 1824, along with the foresight of Congress in 1968 to legislate the Red River Waterway Project, launching a series of locks and dams, has vaulted the river economic necessity.

“Regarding the past, you could go all the way back to the Great Raft which, up until 1838, impeded navigation on the Red River. Captain Shreve and others had the foresight to see what a safe and navigable Red River could become,” said Colin Brown, Red River Waterway Commission’s assistant executive director. “Fast forward 178 years and the Red River has developed into a huge economic engine for the region.”

Since the Federal navigation project was authorized in 1968, the river has generated an estimated $9.9 billion in revenue (adjusted to 2013 dollars) and created 120,000 jobs, directly and indirectly, according to figures provided by the RRWC.

“Or stated another way, the region benefited with over $32 of new state and federal spending, over $47 of new business sales and over $16 of new household earnings, for every $1 of property tax collected,” Brown said.

The river has brought national attention to the area by twice hosting the Bassmaster Classic (2009 and 2012), the most prestigious professional bass fishing event in the country. The ’09 event still reigns as the best attended Classic ever and brought ESPN coverage to the area with the Mike & Mike Show, a sports talk show. The combined economic impact for those two visits was in excess of $40 million.

The river was thrust into the limelight last year when it exceeded its boundaries, flooding homes and causing millions of dollars in damage. Although it’s normally tranquil tributary offering recreational outings to thousands annually, the flood showed it can be cantankerous as well.

Settlers began flooding the Red River Valley in the early 1800s after the Louisiana Purchase, but navigating the river was difficult due to log jams. The most problematic was “The Great Raft,” which extended 165 miles from Shreveport to Natchitoches. Captain Shreve designed his own snagboat to dispatch the logs and got a city named after him for the effort.

The next big move came when the government secured the funds for the five locks and dams, including the Joe D. Waggoner Jr. Lock & Dam No. 5, which sits just south of the Bossier City and Shreveport city limits. The system has served as a year-round waterway connecting ports north and south for businesses the world over.

“The future for the Red River appears to be bright,” Brown said. “However, in order for the river to reach its potential, we need continued funding for the Corps of Engineers to perform operations and maintenance on the navigation features and to continue full time operations of the locks and dams.”

6 significant events in Red River’s history

1714 - Louis Juchereau de St.Denis founded Fort St. James Baptiste, the first permanent settlement west of the Mississippi. It was located where the Red River was at the time. It’s now where the Cane River Lake is in Natchitoches.

1824 – Capt. Henry Miller Shreve clears the river of log impediments, opening the tributary for navigation.

1864 – Confederate General Richard Taylor secured the last major Confederate triumph of the Civil War by defeating Union General Nathanial Banks in fighting along the Red River Valley from Mansfield to Alexandria. Banks and his troops became trapped in Alexandria when the river began falling. He burned the city on his way out of town.

Early 1900s – The river was being neglected and was often used as a garbage dump. The economy was booming but the river was flooding homes and farms.

1925 – The Red River Valley Association was formed to begin taming the river.

1968 – Congress passed legislation to launch the Red River Waterway Project and the Red River Waterway Commission was formed. Working with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the RRWC built five locks and dams that have controlled the water levels for the most part and assisted with safe passage for boats and barges heading to The Port of Shreveport-Bossier. The ports facilitate shipping of everything from building materials to petrochemicals to military equipment.