Torrent Oil needs additional right-of-way to replace Woodside Road bridge
Torrent Oil Co. has been given permission to replace the Woodside Plantation Bridge over Bayou Jack and to donate the completed bridge back to the parish.
However, the $300,000 gift may never be built if the Houston-based oil company can’t reach an agreement with landowners along the road for a wider right-of-way to accommodate the 100-ton limit bridge.
The current bridge over Bayou Jack has a 15-ton limit, which cannot support the heavy equipment Torrent will be moving to open an old well in Bayou Jack oilfield.
The Avoyelles Police Jury unanimously approved the independent oil company’s offer at a special meeting on March 27. They were notified of the potential roadblock to the project on April 4.
Torrent had originally asked the jury to abandon the road and bridge, but was told the parish could not do that. Next the company asked for a portion of Woodside Plantation Road to be designated “restricted use.” That motion failed 5-4.
Torrent was issued a permit in February to re-drill an old well in the Bayou Jack oilfield. Torrent requested permission to remove and replace the existing bridge over Bayou Jack on Woodside Plantation Road, approximately 8,800 feet west of its intersection with La. Hwy 105.
If the project proceeds, the company will transfer the new bridge to the Police Jury as a charitable donation.
Torrent specializes in “re-invigorating” old wells using new technologies. Its website states its mission is “value creation through the acquisition and exploitation of challenging, mature, legacy properties."
Torrent was established in 2015 and partnered with Natural Gas Partners in February 2016 to seek, attain and work wells that still hold untapped potential.
Company President/CEO Greg Wachel has said the company has “an exciting business strategy – identifying and acquiring a select group of assets that are under-capitalized and full of potential. In our view, this market presents unique opportunities to find and generate great value from under-utilized assets.”
Torrent was also issued a permit to drill a well in the Moncrief Field in neighboring St. Landry Parish.