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'Unexpected settlement' to delay bridge project in West Baton Rouge Parish

5 days 20 hours 11 minutes ago Thursday, January 26 2023 Jan 26, 2023 January 26, 2023 9:08 PM January 26, 2023 in News
Source: WBRZ

WEST BATON ROUGE PARISH - Construction of the new LA 1 bridge over the Intracoastal Waterway in West Baton Rouge Parish will drag on up to 10 months longer than planned due to "unexpected settlement" of the structure.

Engineers say the issue concerns the piles under each of the 17 new bridge columns.

"(T)his issue will be mitigated using an alternative soil improvement technique called low-mobility grouting, whereby grout is injected into the ground beneath the piles to compact loose soils," the Department of Transportation and Development said.

Officials note that the delay will not affect the travel lanes on the current LA 1 bridge, which is positioned to the east of the new structure under construction.

The project was expected to cost about $58 million and was to be built in two phases. Phase One -- addressing southbound traffic -- was initially set for completion early this year; Phase Two -- which will remove the existing structures and will install new northbound lanes -- in 2026.

Once both phases are completed, there will be a new southbound bridge that has three 12-foot lanes and 10-foot shoulders, and a new northbound bridge with two 12-foot lanes and 10-foot shoulders and a barrier-separated exit lane for I-10 eastbound.

A spokesperson for DOTD says they are unsure of how much it will cost to fix the mistake. 

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