I-10 expansion at EBR-Ascension line nearing completion
BATON ROUGE - Early Monday (Oct. 19) morning, as drivers along Ascension Parish's stretch of I-10 W noted that three lanes of traffic were open from Prairieville to the Highland Road exit, it became evident that the widening work on I-10 between Baton Rouge and Ascension parishes is nearing completion.
Work has been ongoing since February 2018 on the 6.5-mile stretch between Highland Road and Prairieville, with the goal of adding an additional lane in each direction.
DOTD said via a Monday morning press release, that at this time, all six lanes will be open for some periods of time with intermittent lane closures to finish and finalize the project. After some nighttime and weekend work to complete striping and guardrails, all six lanes of traffic along the 6.5-mile I-10 segment should be fully opened by the end of October, providing increased capacity for the nearly 100,000 vehicles that travel the corridor each day.
“This portion of I-10 is a critical freight corridor for Baton Rouge and New Orleans and a daily commuter route for thousands of residents,” said DOTD Secretary Shawn D. Wilson, Ph.D. “Increasing the capacity will mitigate traffic congestion and encourage economic development in the region. This success story is an example of what the state can do when we are provided the resources.”
Construction for the $72 million project began in February 2018 and includes new interstate bridges above Highland Road and at Bayou Manchac.
The project was executed as a design-build project, a delivery method that allows the contractor and designer to work concurrently. DOTD says this approach compresses the time it takes to complete the project, from planning to final delivery.
As of Monday, though three lanes of traffic are open from Prairieville to Highland Road, cones and barricades continue to block the inside shoulder and on the eastbound side, some areas of the roadway continue to have only two lanes of traffic open.
After a two-year wait for road work to reach its completion, waiting until the end of October will likely be a minor adjustment for Ascension-EBR drivers.
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