2 parish bridges funded for replacement, repair

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Two bridges in Natchitoches are among the 17 in Louisiana that will get federal funding according to the La. Dept. of Transportation and Development (DOTD).

This article published in the Jan. 20, 2022, print edition

They are the bridge on La. 485 near Allen and the bridge on La. 1226 over Bayou Chevreuille.
La. 485 is southwest of Powhatan off Interstate-49 and the bridge on La. 1226 is just south of Hwy 84, approximately 3.5 miles east of Clarence.
The governor’s office announced Tuesday that Louisiana is receiving a billion dollars to repair crumbling bridges. The money comes from the recently approved Infrastructure Law. DOTD Secretary Shawn Wilson says the federal government allocated the dollars based on need and Louisiana is getting a big slice of the pie.
“We are receiving dollars much larger than some states that are three or four times our size, so it says a lot about our condition,” said Wilson.
The state owns 7,800 bridges with nearly 800 of them needing to be replaced or in need of major repair.
About another 800 locally owned bridges are also in desperate need of rehab or replacement.
Wilson says the state will spend about $200 million of the $1 billion this year and they’ve released a list of bridge projects that will see funding.
“Those are bridges that we knew we needed to do anyway. We are going to grow those numbers and do more, not just this year, but for the next four years in addition to this year,” said Wilson.
Wilson says Louisiana will receive the $1 billion over the next five years.
He says more planning is needed to use any of it on a new Mississippi River Bridge in Baton Rouge, but for Lake Charles, “We are going to use some of these dollars on the Calcasieu River Bridge, but recognize that bridge is upwards of a billion dollars more than likely by the time it’s awarded, I can’t use all of my money on any one project,” said Wilson.
Some of the bridge projects that will advance this year due to this funding also include:
• LA 531 over I-20 Bridge Replacement in Webster Parish
• Jimmie Davis Bridge Replacement in Caddo Parish
·I-10 Sabine River Bridges Rehabilitation in Calcasieu Parish
· I-20 Orange Street Overpass Repair in Ouachita Parish
·US 51 over the Yellow Water River in Tangipahoa Parish
·LA 1183 over Turner Canal in Avoyelles Parish
·LA 961 over Sandy Creek in East Feliciana Parish
·LA 404 Bayou and Canal Bridges in Iberville Parish and others.