New Cajun Coast visitor center collapsing
The Cajun Coast Welcome and Interpretative Center in Morgan City is in danger of immediate collapse after early reports from the scene indicate its 75-foot pilings may have given way this morning.
The building had sunk approximately 6 feet by press time. Personnel and media on the scene were moved back because of a concern that, if the building did collapse, they might be struck by glass. Officers who approached the building indicated they could still hear it creaking.
Workers notified CCVCB Executive Director Carrie Stansbury around 8:30 a.m. today that there was a problem with the building. Morgan City Police and Fire departments were notified around 9:50 a.m.
“They have no idea what happened,” Stansbury said.
Representatives from every aspect of the building’s planning or building phase were on their way to the interpretative center and expected around press time.
The building appears to be sinking in the middle, and photos show water lilies at a level higher than the front door.
Stansbury said the building was scheduled to be completed July 15. The parking lot was a separate project and was due to be completed by the end of the year. She and other local officials had just completed a walk-through of the building Tuesday.
“It is very heart-wrenching to see what is happening to the building right now,” she said.
The building on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard was funded with $1.125 million in state money and more than $2 million in local match. Aegis Construction Inc. of LaPlace is the contractor with Washer Hill Lipscomb Cabanis Architects of Baton Rouge designing the project.