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Author Topic: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)  (Read 11405 times)

jbnv

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #50 on: November 14, 2021, 06:27:19 PM »

I don't really disagree with you . It is the classic north LA is a part of Texas mentality, but it is still not that far off.

In a nutshell, there is not enough money for the needs. Little to none of this is wants.  The Baton Rouge south loop needs to at least buy ROW for an eventual freeway. What people outside of Louisiana need to see is that Baton Rouge through the past couple of decades has gone from about third in population to solidly the largest city in Louisiana.

I take issue with characterizing this as a "north LA is a part of Texas mentality." The majority of people in Louisiana live along the I-10/12/US 90 corridor. I-10/12 is a transcontinental route handling both a lot of local traffic and a lot of traffic that came from and/or is going somewhere else.  The corridor is still recovering from multiple hurricanes; we need to have these improvements not just for future evacuations but in a real sense for economic development.
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bwana39

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #51 on: November 14, 2021, 08:42:20 PM »

I don't really disagree with you . It is the classic north LA is a part of Texas mentality, but it is still not that far off.

In a nutshell, there is not enough money for the needs. Little to none of this is wants.  The Baton Rouge south loop needs to at least buy ROW for an eventual freeway. What people outside of Louisiana need to see is that Baton Rouge through the past couple of decades has gone from about third in population to solidly the largest city in Louisiana.

I take issue with characterizing this as a "north LA is a part of Texas mentality." The majority of people in Louisiana live along the I-10/12/US 90 corridor. I-10/12 is a transcontinental route handling both a lot of local traffic and a lot of traffic that came from and/or is going somewhere else.  The corridor is still recovering from multiple hurricanes; we need to have these improvements not just for future evacuations but in a real sense for economic development.

Economic development?  The I-10 and even the US-90 corridor are where most of the commerce in Louisiana are. The cities in North Louisiana  are as poor or poorer than the rural agricultural parishes.

I agree with the priorities you listed. I said so. That said, you certainly seem to dismiss any needs in northern LA where the household incomes are over 10% lower than along the I-10 corridor.  It may not be north Louisiana is a part of Texas, but at the same time, you also seem to miss that the third, seventh, and 9th largest cities in LA are along I-20. (admittedly all of the rest of the top 9 are along I-10). Admittedly 3/4 of the Louisiana population is SOUTH of the 31st parallel. (Over half in the parishes that are least partially east of the Mississippi)
« Last Edit: November 14, 2021, 08:50:56 PM by bwana39 »
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jbnv

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #52 on: November 14, 2021, 09:00:26 PM »

Admittedly 3/4 of the Louisiana population is SOUTH of the 31st parallel.

On this we agree.

That said, you certainly seem to dismiss any needs in northern LA where the household incomes are over 10% lower than along the I-10 corridor.  It may not be north Louisiana is a part of Texas, but at the same time, you also seem to miss that the third, seventh, and 9th largest cities in LA are along I-20.

I didn't decree that a significant majority of the state's population live along 10/12/90. I also have no ability to turn $6 billion into the $15 billion needed to fix everything. Louisiana is one of the poorest states in the country with one of the worst climates for starting/building businesses. I'd love to be able to snap my fingers and fix that, because that would benefit everyone both south and north, but alas I can't.

The matter of north versus south would be largely irrelevant if Louisiana develops a plan for using the $6 billion as a catalyst for getting work started on the big projects. If the state can show that I-49 South, I-10 etc. *can* get done, the voters will be more likely to support the taxes needed to fund everything. My fear is that Legislature will just treat the $6 billion like a cake and slice it up and pass it around. Then we'll still have the same needs *and* no big pile of money to fuel momentum on work.

The economic fact is that not everybody can get what they want. That's not a "north Louisiana might as well be in Texas" mentality. Framing this situation as that does nothing to get anything done.
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #53 on: November 15, 2021, 04:53:26 AM »

Consider north Louisiana as Texas or not there are people that live there as well and justified projects to meet demand exists. Whether or not the majority of people living in south Louisiana is a fact doesn't justify neglecting cities like Shreveport.
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jbnv

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #54 on: November 15, 2021, 09:05:59 AM »

Consider north Louisiana as Texas or not there are people that live there as well and justified projects to meet demand exists. Whether or not the majority of people living in south Louisiana is a fact doesn't justify neglecting cities like Shreveport.

Okay. Show us your plan for dividing the $6 billion among $15 billion worth of work, and we'll assess how equitable it is to north Louisiana.
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #55 on: November 15, 2021, 11:47:52 AM »

Consider north Louisiana as Texas or not there are people that live there as well and justified projects to meet demand exists. Whether or not the majority of people living in south Louisiana is a fact doesn't justify neglecting cities like Shreveport.

Okay. Show us your plan for dividing the $6 billion among $15 billion worth of work, and we'll assess how equitable it is to north Louisiana.
Pay me the money that planners get for doing that and I will. Once again, there is no excuse to neglect the northern half of the state.
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jbnv

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #56 on: November 15, 2021, 08:59:49 PM »

Consider north Louisiana as Texas or not there are people that live there as well and justified projects to meet demand exists. Whether or not the majority of people living in south Louisiana is a fact doesn't justify neglecting cities like Shreveport.

Okay. Show us your plan for dividing the $6 billion among $15 billion worth of work, and we'll assess how equitable it is to north Louisiana.
Pay me the money that planners get for doing that and I will. Once again, there is no excuse to neglect the northern half of the state.

Anthony_JK gave us a priority list and I'm pretty sure he's not getting paid to do this work. Sorry, but I'm not interested in excuses that don't reflect the reality in Louisiana. Especially from someone who apparently doesn't live here.

Here's how I would place the priorities for LA "megaprojects" in the wake of the infrastructure bill passing:

1) I-49 South

     1a) Lafayette Connector + US 90 upgrade south to LA 88
     1b) Complete elevated Westbank Expressway to US 90 (temporary I-910 placeholder until rest of I-49 South is complete)
     1c) Complete Ricohoc/Wax Lake Outlet to Berwick/Morgan City segment through Patterson/Bayou Vista/Berwick
     Complete environmental review/design for remaining Raceland-WBExpy segment

2) I-10 Calcasieu River Bridge/Widen I-10 through Lake Charles

3) I-10 widening through Baton Rouge

4) I-49 Shreveport ICC

5) LA 1 "Gateway to the Gulf" tollway from US 90/Future I-49 South to Port Fourchon/Grand Isle 

6) South Mississippi River bridge for potential Baton Rouge south "bypass"

7) Shreveport "Port to I-49 connector"/future I-69 segment

The first priority gets you a completed I-49 South all the way from Raceland to Lafayette and fully completes the Westbank Expressway.

Second gets you a completed and widened I-10 from the Texas state line to US 165.

Third resolves as much as possible the I-10 bottleneck, though I still think other measures, like the toll loop and a freeway bypass to the south, will still be needed.

Fourth completes I-49 through Shreveport.

Fifth adds a real hurricane evacuation route (remember Hurricane Ida devastated that area).

Sixth...see point to Second. (Though, I want a full freeway, not the arterial presently proposed.)
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #57 on: November 15, 2021, 09:27:21 PM »

I really couldnít give two fucks about what youíre interested in. Shreveport deserves a nice slice of the pie. Thatís my opinion. Donít like it tough. Shame on the government if they share your mentality as well. Iím done with this conversation.
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jbnv

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #58 on: November 16, 2021, 09:39:21 AM »

I really couldnít give two fucks about what youíre interested in. Shreveport deserves a nice slice of the pie. Thatís my opinion. Donít like it tough. Shame on the government if they share your mentality as well. Iím done with this conversation.

Good, you're not adding anything useful to it anyway. If you reconsider I'd appreciate an explanation of how "nice" a slice Shreveport deserves and how that deservance compares with the projects that won't get funded if Shreveport gets its way.
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Anthony_JK

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #59 on: November 16, 2021, 09:42:54 AM »

Personally, if it was up to me, the infrastructure bill would have enough revenue so that everyone's needs, North LA and South LA, would get adequately fulfilled. Problem is, it doesn't work that way.

I have no problem whatsoever with Shreveport getting a decent share of the funding. They deserve at least the ICC and the Port Connector, and four-laning the Jimmie Davis Bridge would also serve a basic need.

THE most basic need in Louisiana, however, is completing I-49 South between Lafayette and NOLA, along with fixing the bottleneck on I-10 in Baton Rouge. That's not slagging on North Louisiana; that's basic fact. US 90 serves four major ports, is the principal hurricane evacuation route for South Louisiana south of BTR, and is already nearly half the way complete in being upgraded to an Interstate-grade freeway.

Not saying that NWLA should get nothing at all, but the focus should be on the greatest needs. Squeakiest wheel gets the grease, you know.
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jbnv

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #60 on: November 16, 2021, 09:49:58 AM »

Not saying that NWLA should get nothing at all, but the focus should be on the greatest needs. Squeakiest wheel gets the grease, you know.

Not only that, but we should use what we have to build momentum so we can get what else we need. If the state demonstrates that it is using the infrastructure funds to get the big things done, then it can win credibility with both the taxpayers of the state and with Washington to ask for the money for the smaller things.
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #61 on: November 16, 2021, 11:48:17 AM »

I have no problem whatsoever with Shreveport getting a decent share of the funding. They deserve at least the ICC and the Port Connector, and four-laning the Jimmie Davis Bridge would also serve a basic need.

Not saying that NWLA should get nothing at all, but the focus should be on the greatest needs. Squeakiest wheel gets the grease, you know.
Agreed. The ICC is what comes to mind at the very least.
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bassoon1986

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I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #62 on: November 17, 2021, 12:03:39 PM »

I have no problem whatsoever with Shreveport getting a decent share of the funding. They deserve at least the ICC and the Port Connector, and four-laning the Jimmie Davis Bridge would also serve a basic need.

Not saying that NWLA should get nothing at all, but the focus should be on the greatest needs. Squeakiest wheel gets the grease, you know.
Agreed. The ICC is what comes to mind at the very least.
Yes, so that I-49 will be completely done in north LA. A complete interstate from I-10 to I-30.


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Hot Rod Hootenanny

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #64 on: November 18, 2021, 11:48:15 PM »

I really hope they do not remove I 10 in New Orleans it needs to be expanded and rebuilt
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jbnv

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #65 on: November 19, 2021, 08:45:47 AM »

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bwana39

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #66 on: November 20, 2021, 01:16:05 PM »

Speaking of what Louisiana should spend their infrastructure money on...
https://www.theadvocate.com/baton_rouge/news/politics/article_01ef0bc2-4702-11ec-aa1d-177c60ac30e6.html?utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebookbatonrouge&utm_campaign=snd&fbclid=IwAR0XlLu5TJ_ixZeYOQmDktG9dSZ50qVMgSRsH_qtkXFd5BMT0I_6mASjHTA

That makes for a good discussion. What was the logic that had them build the Audubon Bridge?   It is the LEAST used highway bridge on the lower Mississippi and traffic levels are not increasing significantly either.
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jbnv

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #67 on: November 20, 2021, 06:28:31 PM »

Speaking of what Louisiana should spend their infrastructure money on...
https://www.theadvocate.com/baton_rouge/news/politics/article_01ef0bc2-4702-11ec-aa1d-177c60ac30e6.html?utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebookbatonrouge&utm_campaign=snd&fbclid=IwAR0XlLu5TJ_ixZeYOQmDktG9dSZ50qVMgSRsH_qtkXFd5BMT0I_6mASjHTA

What was the logic that had them build the Audubon Bridge?   It is the LEAST used highway bridge on the lower Mississippi and traffic levels are not increasing significantly either.

It replaced a ferry crossing. That's pretty much all I've found through an admittedly cursory search.

Wikipedia has no further info about the justification, but it does offer this information about criticism of the bridge:

Quote
It was estimated to carry 4,000 vehicles per day, but it actually averaged 2,887 vehicles per day, in its first year of operation (albeit still significantly more than the 720 vehicles per day that the old ferry used to transport). It is projected to increase traffic to 9,600 vehicles per day by 2026.

During the site selection process, the St. Francisville mayor discouraged putting the bridge near the old ferry landing, because it would affect the views of two historic homes and two cemeteries. The site that was ultimately chosen downriver, however, was also criticized for being south of Entergy's River Bend Nuclear Generating Station, meaning that if the St. Francisville area had to be evacuated due to issues at the nuclear power plant, the bridge would be useless as an evacuation route, despite the exceptional amount of tax dollars spent on it. There are even claims that the southerly location of the bridge has actually discouraged much of the expected increase in commerce between residents of New Roads and St. Francisville, because the much larger city of Zachary is not much further from the site of the bridge and offers many more retail options.
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kernals12

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #68 on: November 22, 2021, 07:04:47 PM »

I really hope they do not remove I 10 in New Orleans it needs to be expanded and rebuilt

I find it hard to believe that, Post-Katrina, any road in New Orleans needs to be expanded.
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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #69 on: November 23, 2021, 12:18:00 AM »

I really hope they do not remove I 10 in New Orleans it needs to be expanded and rebuilt

I find it hard to believe that, Post-Katrina, any road in New Orleans needs to be expanded.

New Orleans Population is back to 3/4 of its pre-Katrina levels and the complete metro area is at or near the 2005 levels.
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Anthony_JK

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #70 on: January 06, 2022, 01:57:23 PM »

I'm thinking that the original justification for adding the JJ Audubon Bridge to the TIMED project list was two-fold: as an accompaniment to the 4-laning of US 61 from Baton Rouge north to the Mississippi state line, and to replace the St. Francisville ferry. There may have also been a thought of adding an additional relief route using LA 10 and LA 1 to Alexandria as a means of relieving the current preferred route of I-10/LA 415/US 190/I-49 (or even US 190/US 71). In addition, during the 1990's there was a proposal called the Zachary Taylor Parkway, which would have 4-laned LA 10 from St. Francisville east through Clinton, Greensburg, and Fluker to I-55; maybe they though about extending it in the future west along LA 10 and LA 1 through New Roads, Simmesport, and Marksville all the way to Alexandria.

A lot of us still believe that the money spent on that project would have been better spent on upgrading US 90 as part of I-49 South...but, it is what it is. (Until it isn't.)
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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #71 on: January 06, 2022, 02:07:14 PM »

I really hope they do not remove I 10 in New Orleans it needs to be expanded and rebuilt

I find it hard to believe that, Post-Katrina, any road in New Orleans needs to be expanded.
Have you not been on this road lately. It experiences back ups. Not sure how regular they are but every time Iíve been on it traffic is moving slowly.
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kernals12

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #72 on: February 03, 2022, 11:57:24 AM »

Governor's Budget has $100 million earmarked for the Lafayette Connector https://gov.louisiana.gov/index.cfm/newsroom/detail/3542
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Anthony_JK

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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #73 on: February 03, 2022, 01:02:28 PM »

Governor's Budget has $100 million earmarked for the Lafayette Connector https://gov.louisiana.gov/index.cfm/newsroom/detail/3542

I'm guessing that most of that will go for constructing the I-49 South interchange with South Ambassador Caffery Parkway, completing the environmental studies for the remaining incomplete segments of the whole of I-49 South, and completing the design work and starting ROW acquisition and buyout of properties within the Lafayette Connector ROW.

The Supplemental EIS won't be finalized with a ROD until Spring of next year, so there is still time to gather up funds for actual construction.
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Re: I-49 Lafayette Connector/I-49 South Update (The Sequel)
« Reply #74 on: February 24, 2022, 08:30:38 AM »


With enough time on my hands, I decided to update my I-49 Connector blog with a major update bumping it to the present.


It includes illustrations of the new Refinement Alternative and subalternative concepts for the proposed "grand boulevard" along the Evangeline Thruway.


I-49 Connector Update (February 2022) -- I-49 Lafayette Connector Support Blog


The new schedule is to have a Preferred Alternative selected by April; with a Draft Supplemental EIS published in July; a Public Hearing on the SEIS in August, and a final Supplemental Record of Decision on a finalized Selected Supplemental Alternative done by March of next year.



Also, feel free to check out LADOTD's cool Virtual Reality website of the Connector (have to get through about a minute of a bad welcome speech before getting to the good stuff, but it's worth it).


I-49 Lafayette Connector Virtual Reality Site



« Last Edit: February 24, 2022, 08:39:11 AM by Anthony_JK »
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