BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Louisiana will receive an additional $76 million to address traffic problems.
Representative Garret Graves says he is working with DOTD Secretary Shawn Wilson and other administration officials to ensure the federal funding is invested in the "highest priority projects," including: I-10, La 1, Nicholson Drive, the Pecue Lane exit, and further improvements to I-12.
Gov. John Bel Edwards says this is the 19th year in a row the state of Louisiana has received these redistributed funds. DOTD qualified for the additional federal funds after successfully allocating the full amount of its available federal funding to construction projects for the 2018-19 federal fiscal year, and having the necessary match dollars available.
The $76.2 million in additional funding will be used for the expansion of I-12 between U.S. 190 and LA 59 and on five bridge replacement projects around the state.
The I-12 project will add a third lane in each direction and include new bridges over U.S. 190 and Ponchitolawa Creek/Tammany Trace. St. Tammany Parish is contributing $8 million to the project. DOTD is partnering with St. Tammany Parish for several projects on I-12, including the section between LA 21 and U.S. 190, for which the parish received a $25 million Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation in December 2018. DOTD is also preparing plans for the third phase of I-12 improvements from LA 1077 to U.S. 190.
The bridge projects to be funded include the following:
- Bayou Boeuf Bridge on LA 106 in Avoyelles Parish
- Creek Bridge on LA 507 in Red River Parish
- Three bridges on LA 1042 east of Greensburg in St. Helena Parish
- LA 532 bridge over I-20 in Webster Parish
- Amite River Bridge on LA 16 near French Settlement in Livingston Parish
“This award is a testament to the proven track record this administration has had to advance, prioritize and improve our state's infrastructure,” said Gov. Edwards. “Under Secretary Wilson’s leadership, DOTD has been able to use all the federal resources available which has allowed us to take advantage of the federal redistribution allocation year after year. These additional funds will allow us to continue to advance projects across the state.”
“We appreciate the USDOT’s allocation of these funds,” said Secretary Wilson. “These funds will allow us to advance critical projects that have been previously identified in the area of maintenance, preservation, and capacity. As with previous redistributed funds, we have ensured these allocations will impact all areas across the state.”