Public meeting set for toll road
BATON ROUGE - A public meeting will be held next month on a proposed toll-bypass around Baton Rouge. The proposal comes on the heels of studies showing Baton Rouge has some of the worst traffic in the country for medium-sized cities.
The Louisiana Transportation Authority set the public hearing for October 20th after having a closed-door meeting Tuesday with the company proposing the plan.
AECOM, an international engineering firm, first proposed the plan in January. The bypass would go for 23 miles starting at I-10 and Pecue Lane in East Baton Rouge Parish. It would follow Arline Highway north and west around the city and cross the Mississippi River on the Hwy 190 bridge before rejoining I-10 four miles west of the Hwy 415 interchange in West Baton Rouge Parish.
Free public roads would still run parallel to the proposed toll road.
The bypass would cost upwards of $1 billion to construct and would be ready in 2022. AECOM proposed a public-private partnership with the state, one where a private company pays for the construction and recoups the investment with the tolls.
If approved, the state would undergo the normal bidding process. AECOM would have to enter bids like any other company.
The plan would use the existing right-of-way, so no private property would need to be acquired.