Lake GP satellite view

A satellite view of Lake Georgia Pacific. A GP spokesperson said the company plans to close the western levee road access because vehicular damage to the roadway has become prohibitively expensive to repair. (USGS/Public Domain)

A portion of the Lake Georgia Pacific levee will soon be off-limits to vehicle access from the public.

GP Crossett Spokeswoman Jennifer King said that the company would be closing the western levee at Lake GP to traffic some time in mid-August.  Damage to the road on the levee has become so extensive that it is cost prohibitive to repair it, she said.

“We are going to permanently close the west levee to vehicular traffic in the middle of the month,” King said. “It is in need of repair due to damage from vehicular traffic and we want to minimize that as well as minimize safety concerns to the community.”

King said there is no danger of the levee breaching, but the company will block the road to inhibit further damage. The public will still be able to use the northern levee road, which many use as a cut-through to reach the Saline River’s Stillion Access point.

“The public will still be able to access the fishing pier, the store,” King said. “Our plan is to repair and maintain the north levee road. If maintenance costs start to prove prohibitive we may have to close that road in the future.”

Gates are already installed on the western levee and posted signs have been placed in the area, King said, but she is working now to get the word out to the public before the road is closed.

The levees around Lake GP were built in the mid-1960s. The company first announced its plan to build the lake in January 1963, at the same time it announced its plans to build the tissue paper mill and the former plywood plant.

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