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LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) -
Citizens and local officials attended the Department of Transportation and Development public meeting on Tuesday to discuss the proposed projects for I-210 Cove Lane/Nelson Road improvements.
Six different proposed project designs were displayed at the meeting.
Each design showed how the environment would be affected depending on which project is chosen for roadway development.
The purpose of the project, officials say, is to accommodate existing traffic demands between Cove Lane and Nelson Road. Especially once the new casino, Ameristar, is completed.
"The study began in August and will complete in January of 2013," Senior Project Manager for the road and infrastructure design company ARCADIS Scott Hoffeld said. "But that's just the study. After this study is complete, then there's design, right of way acquisition and construction."
Hoffeld said elements of whichever plan is chosen will be available for use in 2014. Whether it's overpasses, intersections or new roadways that will be available is unknown at this point.
Residents who attended the meeting think the roadway improvements are necessary, but think the Prien Lake exit, or Cove Lane exit, should stay open.
"It is imperative that the Cove Lane not be closed. That's too important. But if they want to but an overpass or an intersection there, that's fine," Lake Charles resident Stan Chapman said.
"Traffic is just terrible around Walmart and Nelson Road exchange there and so it's definitely necessary especially with the added traffic that Ameristar's going to bring to the city," Margaret "Maggie" Cronwell of Lake Charles said.
And other residents agree that the project will make some improvements to the traffic flow in that area, and agree it's a project that needs to be done.