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Public meeting Thursday for proposed roundabout at dangerous Ascension intersection

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PRAIRIEVILLE - A caution light sits at the intersection of Joe Sevario Road and Highway 42 in Ascension Parish, but not much caution is being used. 

Residents living nearby say bad wrecks are common at the intersection. The caution light is the latest effort to alleviate those woes, but to no avail. 

"The caution light’s been there for a while and it hasn’t stopped any accidents so the roundabout’s the way to go," said 'Coach" Kavanaugh, who lives in Twelve Oaks subdivision.

“We have had at least from my knowledge at least four fatalities. And two people had to get airlifted," said Jessica Fitch, another resident of Twelve Oaks.

Data from the Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office shows there have been 82 crashes at the intersection since 2018. 

Now, a new solution has been proposed by the Department of Transportation. A $1 million to $2.5 million roundabout could go at the intersection.

However, constructing the roundabout would call for right-of-way property to be seized from Leonard Mathews, who has lived on the corner of Hwy. 42 and Joe Sevario for four decades.

“We probably get, I don’t know one or two a month it seems like and some of them have resulted in death. Been pretty severe wrecks," Mathews said.

Mathews says, even though he's grown attached to the place he calls home, he'll do whatever it takes to save lives. Even if that means knocking down his entire house.

It is what it is. If it will help save somebody’s life or from being crippled or whatever, then do what you gotta do."

Many residents in the Twelve Oaks subdivision have been calling for a roundabout for years, and they're happy something is finally being done to address the dangerous conditions.

“If you yield at the yield sign, everything will go fine," Kavanaugh said.

A public meeting is scheduled for Thursday at the Oak Grove Community Center in Prairieville from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Officials from DOTD will be present to answer questions from the public. 


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