Baldwin welcomes newest business, opens fire station
Baldwin is celebrating the location of a major fabricator on the Charenton Navigation and Drainage Canal that promises to bring jobs and a boost to the town’s economy.
Mayor Wayne Breaux said the purchase of the former Superior Fabricators facility by the Port of West St. Mary to lease to LAD Services, LLC is “a bright spot.”
The company intends to build barges at the old site.
LAD is attempting to rehire Superior employees and will employ up to 100 over the months to come.
Completion of the town fire station at the former Baldwin Elementary School was a major highlight of the year. Breaux said he has been applying to state grant funding sources for nearly 10 years when it finally was awarded.
“About that time the school board sold us the old elementary school and we worked out a plan to tie the new fire station into the old school,” Breaux said. “Mostly the new construction portion is to house fire equipment and some offices. We tied it in to the existing school to use as training and classroom facilities.”
That $1 million project took the fire department out of its facility near city hall which it had long ago outgrown. The funds were mostly state funds, and the parish supplied some funds for driveway work.
Also this year levee construction began in the Bayou Choupique area for flood protection. “That’s the only area in town that is susceptible to flood waters,” Breaux said.
That project rings in at about $1.2 million. “We hope to get additional funding from the parish levee district to complete that project, and they’re assisting us in the plans and land acquisitions,” Breaux said.
The mayor continues to work on building a fire substation under the U.S. 90 overpass at Martin Luther King Street, currently seeking federal approval of the site and facility. That station will aid fire protection for residents west of the railroad track.
Breaux also noted that overlay and surface drainage work in the Choupique area has begun as well, funded by a parish allocation of hurricane mitigation funds.
Damage by recent storms and surges has necessitated the reconstructions.
There are two houses left on the town’s rehabilitation project which will be finished soon, the mayor said.