LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - Lake Charles Mayor Nic Hunter along with other state and local officials have announced plans for a proposed $20 million lakefront project .
The project, named “Port Wonder," is billed as a educational and entertainment venue which would be located on the north shore of Lake Charles between Cypress Alligator Pond and the former Harrah’s parking garage.
The venture will include site improvements, renovation of the parking garage and the construction of a new structure that will house the Children’s Museum of Lake Charles. The structure may also potentially house the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries' Science Center and Educational Complex (SCEC).
The SCEC component of the project would be contingent on the Louisiana Trustee Implementation Group’s (TIG) final approval of the location and any design changes proposed for the center.
“This is a momentous announcement and a historic day for Lake Charles and Southwest Louisiana,” said Mayor Nic Hunter. “This announcement today puts us one step closer to delivering on a commitment to lakefront development. I cannot stress enough how this proposed project would not be possible without the contributions and consideration of multiple public and private partners. To be able to deliver this game-changing development is something everyone should be proud of and we look forward to entering the final stages of the approval process.”
“To date, some funding partners have taken official action on allocating money to this project and other partners will consider official action regarding contributions to this project over the coming weeks and months,” added Mayor Hunter. “No new tax proposition is needed to fund this project.”
“This is an exciting opportunity for Lake Charles to provide a public science center and educational complex to not only enhance the use of its outdoor spaces but to also encourage a better understanding of fisheries and restoration programs,” said Gov. John Bel Edwards.
The City of Lake Charles and the Children’s Museum of Lake Charles have solicited government and private funding partners. Port Wonder is expected to be fully funded if the Louisiana Trustee Implementation Group gives their final approval.