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Transportation leaders review 2015 road projects

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BATON ROUGE - State transportation leaders and legislators met Thursday at the State Capitol to discuss road projects slated for next year.

The Department of Transportation and Development says its budget for fiscal year 2015-16 is nearly $650 million, but there's more than $12 billion worth of needs in the state.

Construction experts like Louisiana Associated General Contractors CEO Ken Naquin says the state needs to solve its traffic issues before big business drives away.

"It would be horrible if we lose some of our $100 billion of economic development cause we don't have the infrastructure to handle the increase in workers, the increase in goods and services that have to go into making the plant and what the plant produces," said Naquin.

One of the major concerns brought up at the Capitol was the bumper-to-bumper traffic on the Mississippi River Bridge on I-10. West Baton Rouge Parish President "Pee Wee" Berthelot says the state needs to pick one project and bite the bullet.

"We got all these things We're not going to get all these things. When you add all those projects up we have about $12.8 billion worth of projects in the Capital Region," said Berthelot.

DOTD says it will do a study next year on the possibility of building a new bridge over the river. It would connect Nicholson Drive to Louisiana Highway 1 over the river in either Plaquemine, Addis or Brusly.

For a full list of Capital Region road projects listed for next year click here.

 

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