BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) – Drivers could have a new option to navigate around Baton Rouge traffic as soon as 2027.
On Tuesday at a Baton Rouge Area Chamber meeting, Kara Moree, a representative from Atlas, which is working with DOTD to pick a location for the new bridge, announced the list of sites had been cut down to 17. The site list includes five potential areas between Addis and Plaquemine, six between Plaquemine and White Castle, and six more stretching down to Donaldsonville.
According to planners, no site has received priority however a source with close knowledge of the bridge’s planning told WAFB a site closer to Baton Rouge is preferred to help draw more traffic that would normally go through baton rouge.ADVERTISEMENT
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“Certainly you have to balance a number of issues but at the end of the day you want drivers to want to choose that new location and ideally we’re trying to pull people off the new Horrace Wilkinson Bridge and get them to use this bridge,” said Scott Kirkpatrick, Executive Director of Crisis (Capital Region Industry for Sustainable Infrastructure Solutions).
Kirkpatrick gave the timeline for when the bridge could be complete. Already, major hurdles such as funding have been cleared as the state legislature passed funding for the project during the last legislative session.
“So now we’re just trying to get that location set, get the environmental reviews and then we can launch into construction, and I’m told with design, build, and construction, they can do this in four or five years,” he said.ADVERTISEMENT
The list of 17 is expected to be cut to three by the Summer, but not before the public can give their opinions on the proposed sites.
“We’re doing everything we can to alleviate that choke point, open up commerce, make sure if you need to go around Baton Rouge you can do it, and if you need to get in the heart of Baton Rouge, you can do that as well,” Kirkpatrick said. “Overall, that’s going to be a huge boon for the region.”