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Work in Progress, January 10, 2011: Cato Levee and Highway C

Jan 10, 2011

The US Army Corps of Engineers replacement of the Cato water control structure is almost complete. The cut in the Cato Levee has been filled in on top of the newly poured structure. Removing the coffer dams on either side of the levee is all that the contractors must do to finish the project. As of last week, they have begun hauling the dirt away.

A little bit further south, Little River District (LRRD) continues to work their way up Ditch 111 as they get closer to the Cato Levee. This last mile stretch hasn’t been cleaned out in 60 years. Last week they made it to the newly replace Highway C culvert and are now on the north side of the road. At this point it is necessary for LRRD to cut a platform on the side of the ditch so that the excavator can reach the far side. They will continue to work their way north and eventually tie into the new Cato Levee structure.

The two new structures and dredged ditch will reduce the amount of resistance through this water delivery network. This will make it easier for us to divert water from the Castor River down Ditch 111 to recharge Duck Creek’s Pool 1 when the river is up.


photo of cato levee earth work
Cato Levee Work
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has almost completed replacing the Cato Levee water-control structure. Coffer dams removal will be the last step.


Photo of work on Ditch 111
Ditch 111 Work Continues
The Little River Drainage District continues to work up Ditch 111. It is now north of Highway C and moving toward the Cato Levee.


The Cato Levee is north of Duck Creek.  Highway C actually runs parrallel to it for quite some time.  This levee is the beginning of Little River Drainage District's Diversion Channel, which diverts water from the Castor River to head east to the Mississippi River.  Before the diversion of the river it snaked southward through the lowlands.   Cato slough was a small overflow channel of the Castor that historically drained into the Mingo Basin.  It too was cut off by the Cato Levee and diversion of the Castor. The Cato Levee structure allows us to take water from the Castor during high flows and send them down Ditch 111.  This ditch goes 7 miles and goes through 2 more culverts (Highway C and Highway 51) until it runs along the west side of Pool 1.  At our new water control structure at Pool 1, the ditch changes its name to Ditch 1 (part of the old Mingo Drainage District) and continues south through Mingo NWR.     I hope this gives you a little better idea of where this structure is located.  Thanks for the question.

Where is the Cato Levee?

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