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DOTD provides update on multi-parish projects

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PORT ALLEN - Drivers in Louisiana travel through ongoing road projects daily. DOTD Secretary Shawn Wilson knows commuters are growing impatient.

"It's been a frustrating issue, but I'd much rather have a little frustration now than have to close that bridge permanently if it's unsafe," said Wilson.

He's specifically referring to the Intracoastal Bridge in Port Allen.

"It should have been changed a while ago, but because of the insecure funding, we have we've pushed that project back. We're going to have to spend $140 million to replace that bridge. That bridge is going to consume more than 100-percent of what I spend on bridges the entire year across the state of Louisiana."

After implementing several changes to the construction plan to help ease traffic, DOTD does not have an updated completion date on the LA 1 problem. Work was originally supposed to be finished this summer.

"We will give you an updated date in about a week or so after we see how this new implementation goes."

Lane expansions have been going on for more than a year around the Highland/Perkins exit on I-10, and are expected to be done by spring. 

Work on the same expansion from the bridge to the 10/12 split should start by the end of 2019, but it'll be done in sections as DOTD has not yet secured all of the property it needs to proceed. 

"I don't believe we've acquired anything in terms of the bridge but we have met with residents and property owners. Some are supportive of selling their properties and others are just learning the process so they can understand what their opportunities and possibilities are."

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