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Officials still narrowing down site for additional Mississippi River bridge

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BATON ROUGE - Drivers in the capital city badly want a new bridge over the Mississippi River, but residents don't know where or when it might be built.

Just a few months ago, 32 potential sites were up for debate. Now it's been narrowed down to 17.

"So, we're looking at locations you'll see in the Brusly, Addis, St. Gabriel, Plaquemines areas. So after sorting through those where they're finding environmental challenges, or they're finding navigation challenges, we're eliminating those locations. And then, hopefully very soon, we'll get it down to a small number," Executive Director of CRISIS Scott Kirkpatrick said.

Aside from those challenges, a federal review process needs to happen to secure permits that allow dollars to bridge those funding gaps.

"Thankfully, with this past legislative session, we secured most of the funding we need for this bridge. Which is great," Kirkpatrick explained. "But because of that federal process, they're going through a lot of due diligence, checking a lot of boxes. A big and robust environmental process, making sure that the communities are accepting of these locations."

Officials hope to narrow down the list of locations to three by next summer. In the meantime, drivers will just have to keep waiting.

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