Posted: Dec 6, 2011 11:35 AM by Russell Jones, Michael Shingleton
Updated: Dec 6, 2011 11:35 AM
BATON ROUGE - Transportation officials said the contractor working on the expansion of I-10 between the I-10/12 split and Siegen Lane is more than a year behind schedule, so they will be replaced.
The project was supposed to be completed by the end of the year. Jodi Conachen, a spokesperson for the Department of Transportation and Development, said contractor Austin Bridge and Road wasn't moving fast enough so changes would be made.
"We are going to hold them accountable for that," she told News 2. "They have to finish in the time frame we have required."
According to Conachen, the state sent a letter to the project's insurance agency requiring them to find a new contractor before Christmas. She said they this past spring DOTD warned Austin they needed to move more quickly on the project, even forbidding them from accepting new contracts within the state until they completed their current work, which includes two other jobs they are currently behind on.
"That's unacceptable in our book, and we want the tax payers to get their money's worth which is why we're moving forward and not waiting any longer to get someone else in place," Conachen said.
News 2 reached out to the Texas-based company for comment, but they did not respond.
The expansion project is broken into two sections, with Austin handling the area between the I-10/12 split and Siegen Lane. James Construction Group and Boh Brothers out of New Orleans are handling the stretch from Siegen to Highland Road, which is on schedule according to DOTD.
Conachen said with the delays, the expansion should be finished next fall.