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Author Topic: I49 in LA  (Read 506953 times)

Scott5114

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #325 on: July 22, 2012, 05:46:14 AM »

So now we know what Susan Stafford has been doing since she stopped turning letters, huh? :D
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Grzrd

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Roadgeek Reporter Covering I-49 South?
« Reply #326 on: July 25, 2012, 10:25:59 PM »

In this article, the reporter takes a local politician to task for taking a position based on a false perception of I-49:

Quote
state Rep ... Taylor Barras ....  said the money can make things difficult. Then, Barras incorrectly said I-49 starts around Minnesota or maybe even Canada .... Based on that false assertion, Barras said asking South Louisiana to pay for the final leg of I-49, between Lafayette and New Orleans, was “not totally acceptable.”

However, I'm not entirely confident that the reporter always reports an accurate quote:

Quote
Funding permitting, DOTD has said I-49 will be finished in 2023, ending in Marrero south of New Orleans.

I guess I'm being a bit picky, but my understanding is that new I-49 South construction would connect to the Westbank Expressway in Marrero, with a completed I-49 South connecting to and ending at I-10 in New Orleans.

Above all said, the critical part of the story:

Quote
The state needs $5 billion to finish I-49.
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Anthony_JK

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #327 on: July 26, 2012, 12:19:33 PM »

Nobody said that South Louisiana politicians were Mensas.

Then again, Mr. Landry does have a point, though he bungled it badly. Most of US 90 between New Iberia and Raceland is already up to Interstate grade, with only the segment between Wax Lake and Berwick and a couple of interchanges and frontage road segments left to upgrade. The big issue, as always, will be completing the section though Lafayette...and although I personally wouldn't oppose tolling the segments from Lafayette to New Iberia using the "Texas-style" tollway system (US 90 carried via the frontage roads/Evangeline Thruway similar to Beltway 8, I-49 using the mainlines ala the Sam Houston Tollway), there is a legitimate argument about having South LA foot the toll bill since I-49 North (of Sherveport) is being built "free". The Feds may have to intervene with some assistance in this one.

I can also see the remaining segments of I-49 South between Raceland and New Orleans built in part with tolls, too, since they are mostly on new alignment.
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mcdonaat

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #328 on: July 26, 2012, 08:35:10 PM »

Here's the thing, though... South LA was fighting tooth and nail for I-49 South. North LA was more relaxed, since US 71 was perfectly fine. I would rather I-49 South utilize the I-310 alignment than I-910, with I-910 being extended with tolls. Make that I-910, signed, and the problem is solved. By the way, just out of curiosity, what is the expected travel benefits? I know that I-49 North means you can knock off 40 mins from a trip by going from 35-45-55 MPH to 70, maybe 75 MPH.

Grzrd

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #329 on: July 27, 2012, 03:40:19 PM »

I'm not sure how long it has been on the website but LaDOTD now has a revised I-49 South Project From Lafayette to New Orleans webpage (I think years ago an engineering firm had its I-49 South webpage posted on the LaDOTD website).  The project is described as follows;

Quote
The I-49 South project from Lafayette to New Orleans will convert U.S. 90 into an interstate-quality roadway which would enhance travel between the two cities but ultimately across the state and nation once the entire project is completed.
The construction of frontage roads along U.S. 90 is the preliminary steps in the construction of the I-49 Extension between Lafayette and New Orleans. As such, the construction of frontage road projects will have a significant impact on a large part of the state.
Economic Impact
The extension of I-49 will provide a direct access of Midwest industries to the ports of south Louisiana, a bypass around Baton Rouge for east-west traffic on I-10, and a connection between oil industry suppliers and manufacturers from New Orleans to Houston. This segment of US 90 is already a major industrial corridor in Louisiana that will expand significantly with better highway access.

The "bypass around Baton Rouge for east-west traffic on I-10" angle is an interesting justification for the project.  Take #3,971?
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mcdonaat

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #330 on: July 27, 2012, 08:05:49 PM »

Could I see I-49 Suth carrying I-10 Alternate?

Anthony_JK

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #331 on: July 29, 2012, 11:56:40 AM »

Could I see I-49 Suth carrying I-10 Alternate?

In a word?  NO. You'll see them bring back "I-10S" shields before they do that.

If LADOTD was really smart, they'd  bring back the online plans/EIS's for ALL the segments of I-49 South, not just the Raceland-New Orleans segment. They used to have the EIS's for the Wax Lake-Berwick segment and the LRA-LA 88 segments online, but for some reason they pulled them. And, having the I-49 Lafayette Connector plans available wouldn't suck, either.
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Anthony_JK

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #332 on: July 29, 2012, 12:05:51 PM »

Also...they seriously need to add the LA 318 interchange EA study onto that page...STAT.
« Last Edit: July 30, 2012, 02:20:20 AM by Anthony_JK »
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Road Hog

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #333 on: July 29, 2012, 02:00:14 PM »

This is what bothers me a little about I-49 South. Unless it terminates at a 3-digit in Greater New Orleans, it'll be an interstate that crosses one interstate (I-10) and then doubles back to intersect it again. Isn't that pretty much the definition of an even-numbered 3DI?

With the exception of I-10/I-12 nearby and also I-90/94 between Chicago and Madison, I don't know of any other instances where two separately-numbered 2DIs split and reconverge. I suppose the precedent's been set, but it seems odd.
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mcdonaat

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #334 on: July 29, 2012, 04:55:22 PM »

This is what bothers me a little about I-49 South. Unless it terminates at a 3-digit in Greater New Orleans, it'll be an interstate that crosses one interstate (I-10) and then doubles back to intersect it again. Isn't that pretty much the definition of an even-numbered 3DI?

With the exception of I-10/I-12 nearby and also I-90/94 between Chicago and Madison, I don't know of any other instances where two separately-numbered 2DIs split and reconverge. I suppose the precedent's been set, but it seems odd.
I-12 is a mainline route that begins and ends at I-10. I-49 South could be numbered I-810 or 410, with it using 310 instead of 910. Westwego/Gretna would oppose it, but who cares? How about just I-6? East-west located below I-10 and above I-4. Or just name it LA 3296 or LA 1268

Anthony_JK

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #335 on: July 29, 2012, 06:18:36 PM »

This is what bothers me a little about I-49 South. Unless it terminates at a 3-digit in Greater New Orleans, it'll be an interstate that crosses one interstate (I-10) and then doubles back to intersect it again. Isn't that pretty much the definition of an even-numbered 3DI?

Normally, yes...but this is an EXTENSION of an existing route (I-49) which doesn't end until I-20, and ultimately to I-30 and beyond. I'd say that it's too long to be a 3DI, its importance as a key business corridor earns it a 2DI designation. If I-4 deserves to be  2di, than this deserves to be an I-49 extension.  Plus, it's longer than I-12.


Quote
With the exception of I-10/I-12 nearby and also I-90/94 between Chicago and Madison, I don't know of any other instances where two separately-numbered 2DIs split and reconverge. I suppose the precedent's been set, but it seems odd.

Actually, I-10 and I-12 don't neccessarily split; I-12 simply serves as I-10's bypass of the NOLA region.


[...] I-49 South could be numbered I-810 or 410, with it using 310 instead of 910. Westwego/Gretna would oppose it, but who cares? How about just I-6? East-west located below I-10 and above I-4. Or just name it LA 3296 or LA 1268

Well, for starters, Westwego and Gretna and the rest of NOLA would care greatly, because the corridor is defined by federal law as using the Westbank Expressway, and they are relying on the completion of I-49 to finish the upgrade of the WBX in line with the Huey P. Long Bridge improvements.

A state designatiion for a 143-mile freeway??  Pardon my dispostion, but...HELL TO THE NO!!!

« Last Edit: July 30, 2012, 02:14:32 AM by Anthony_JK »
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O Tamandua

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #336 on: July 29, 2012, 10:33:26 PM »



[...] I-49 South could be numbered I-810 or 410, with it using 310 instead of 910. Westwego/Gretna would oppose it, but who cares? How about just I-6? East-west located below I-10 and above I-4. Or just name it LA 3296 or LA 1268

Well, for starters, Westwego and Gretna and the rest of NOLA would care greatly, because the corridor is defined by federal law as using the Westbank Expressway, and they are relying on the completion of I-49 to finish the upgrade of the WBX in line with the Huey P. Long Bridge improvements.

An state designatiion for a 143-mile freeway??  Pardon my dispostion, but...HELL TO THE NO!!!
[/quote]

I take it this is the same NOLA Huey P. Long bridge?  (Amazing, there are three parallel above-deck bridge steel structures here and I don't think two of them (the ones on either side of the train track bridge) were in place two years ago although a couple lanes either direction of the highway were...)
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mcdonaat

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #337 on: July 29, 2012, 11:09:06 PM »

Actually... this is copied and pasted from the FHWA list of corridors.

United States Route 90 from I-49 in Lafayette, Louisiana, to I-10 in New Orleans.

According to that, US 90 is being upgraded, which could mean I-49 CAN use I-310. I-910 can be signed as such, and I would rather I-49 traffic be dumped out in the swamps with I-10 instead of at the CBD with I-10. I would push for the Westbank Expwy IF I-10 is demolished along Claiborne Avenue (New Orleans is pushing for it) with I-49 using the old Pontchartrain Expwy, and I-10 is rerouted along I-610. In a perfect world, I-10 would have been built through City Park, and 610 would have looped down to the 'Dome.

Anyways, putting alignment issues aside, what's the status on the Morgan City bridges that are going to be replaced? Funny how US 90's freeway bridges over Bayou Ramos are cracking, but ole LA 182 is doing just fine.

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #338 on: July 30, 2012, 01:16:47 AM »

United States Route 90 from I-49 in Lafayette, Louisiana, to I-10 in New Orleans.
That's saying that pork can be used on this corridor. Nothing at all about freeway status, or numbering, or anything else.
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Anthony_JK

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #339 on: July 30, 2012, 02:12:59 AM »

Actually... this is copied and pasted from the FHWA list of corridors.

United States Route 90 from I-49 in Lafayette, Louisiana, to I-10 in New Orleans.

According to that, US 90 is being upgraded, which could mean I-49 CAN use I-310. I-910 can be signed as such, and I would rather I-49 traffic be dumped out in the swamps with I-10 instead of at the CBD with I-10. I would push for the Westbank Expwy IF I-10 is demolished along Claiborne Avenue (New Orleans is pushing for it) with I-49 using the old Pontchartrain Expwy, and I-10 is rerouted along I-610. In a perfect world, I-10 would have been built through City Park, and 610 would have looped down to the 'Dome.

Anyways, putting alignment issues aside, what's the status on the Morgan City bridges that are going to be replaced? Funny how US 90's freeway bridges over Bayou Ramos are cracking, but ole LA 182 is doing just fine.

Since the WBX is designated as US 90 Business, it fits into the official definition in a way that I-310 doesn't.

The reason they ran I-10 the way they did rather than through what is now I-610 is to access the CBD and the French Quarter. Plus, there is no guarantee that the Claiborne Elevated will be torn down, because those who use it the most, such as NOLA East, and the state officials and the Feds who funded it, will have some say in the matter as well as the locals.

Using I-310 would save a ton of money, but it wouldn't complete the WBX, and it would dump traffic onto an already swamped I-10 through Metarie and Kenner. At least I-49 through the Westbank enroute to downtown NOLA would ease other arteries, as well as support the Huey P. Long improvements.
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Anthony_JK

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #340 on: July 30, 2012, 02:18:19 AM »


I take it this is the same NOLA Huey P. Long bridge?  (Amazing, there are three parallel above-deck bridge steel structures here and I don't think two of them (the ones on either side of the train track bridge) were in place two years ago although a couple lanes either direction of the highway were...)

You be correctamundo....the additional structures are part of the widening of the roadways to 3 lanes with proper shoulders, probably to match the girders surrounding the rail structure in the median. If you are going to build or upgrade a bridge, don't build it ugly.  =)
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mgk920

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #341 on: July 30, 2012, 10:34:57 AM »

This is what bothers me a little about I-49 South. Unless it terminates at a 3-digit in Greater New Orleans, it'll be an interstate that crosses one interstate (I-10) and then doubles back to intersect it again. Isn't that pretty much the definition of an even-numbered 3DI?

With the exception of I-10/I-12 nearby and also I-90/94 between Chicago and Madison, I don't know of any other instances where two separately-numbered 2DIs split and reconverge. I suppose the precedent's been set, but it seems odd.

Ditto I-43/I-xx in Wisconsin and I-90 and I-94 between Tomah, WI and Billings, MT.

Mike
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O Tamandua

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #342 on: July 30, 2012, 10:51:07 AM »


I take it this is the same NOLA Huey P. Long bridge?  (Amazing, there are three parallel above-deck bridge steel structures here and I don't think two of them (the ones on either side of the train track bridge) were in place two years ago although a couple lanes either direction of the highway were...)

You be correctamundo....the additional structures are part of the widening of the roadways to 3 lanes with proper shoulders, probably to match the girders surrounding the rail structure in the median. If you are going to build or upgrade a bridge, don't build it ugly.  =)

Thanks, Anthony_JK.

I'm still amazed at some of our feats of engineering though I know it's not just restricted to the USofA...
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Gordon

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #343 on: July 30, 2012, 10:13:36 PM »

What about I 310 to Existing I 49. They are always talking about money to get it done, so looks that if they would finish it to those locations then maybe later extend to Marrero would be at least a start.
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Grzrd

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #344 on: August 11, 2012, 02:03:20 PM »

LADOT has a job for 11/14/12 to widen LA 168 to US 71 so they can open those segments until Arkansas can finish there 4 miles.

The LaDOTD website indicates that the LA 168 project has been pulled from the future lettings.  I think they are just postponing it until they are closer to opening I-49 North, which now looks like it will open in Summer 2013 instead of Spring 2013.

LaDOTD is continuing ITS relatively torrid pace by tentatively scheduling Segment J for a November 14 letting:
Quote
Parish-Caddo
Letting Date-2012-11-14
Project-H.003496 455-09-0002
Route-I-49
Project Name- I-49 North (Mlk Jr Dr-la 1) Seg J

However, the good news is that the Segment J project is still listed.

Quote
Lead Project: H.003453.3
Lead Federal No. : H003453
Parish(es): Lafayette
Description: I-49 CONNECTOR BUILDING DEMOLITION
Type: BUILDING DEMOLITION AND RELATED WORK
the I-49 Connector building demolition project was withdrawn (and not simply postponed) on May 8:
Quote
STATE PROJECT-H.003453.3
ADDENDUM NO.-01 (Proposal)
ADDENDUM/WITHDRAW DATE-4/11/2012
PROJECT STATUS (withdrawn/postponed)-Withdrawn
5/8/2012
Maybe they decided to wait for results of the I-49 Connector toll study ...

OTOH the I-49 Connector project has not re-appeared on the future lettings page.

In this article, the reporter takes a local politician to task for taking a position based on a false perception of I-49:
Quote
state Rep ... Taylor Barras ....  said the money can make things difficult. Then, Barras incorrectly said I-49 starts around Minnesota or maybe even Canada .... Based on that false assertion, Barras said asking South Louisiana to pay for the final leg of I-49, between Lafayette and New Orleans, was “not totally acceptable.”
Nobody said that South Louisiana politicians were Mensas.

In fairness to Rep. Barras, he had probably been looking at this map from the interstate 49.org website that helps make a strong visual case for the importance of the I-49 corridor:


He should have known better, but maybe we should give him a partial roadgeek pass.  :sombrero:
« Last Edit: August 11, 2012, 03:16:38 PM by Grzrd »
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Road Hog

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #345 on: August 11, 2012, 03:47:06 PM »

I've driven LA 168 on a sightseeing side trip, and it's a surprisingly hilly and scenic road (considering it's Louisiana, after all). The giant abandoned schoolhouse in Rodessa is a sight to see as well. But the road is very curvy with severely limited sight lines, and there's no way can it handle interstate detour traffic.
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Grzrd

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Lafayette's I-49 South Toll Study Suspended
« Reply #346 on: September 12, 2012, 08:15:32 AM »

This article, about potential tolling of US 90 to fund I-49 South, indicates that "funding permitting", I-49 South should be substantially completed in all areas, except those near New Orleans, by 2017, and that the sections near New Orleans should see "substantial completion" by 2023
Quote
The Louisiana Legislature passed SCR 38 in the recent session, which provides for a feasibility study looking at authorizing tolls to finish I-49 South .... DOTD will conduct the study and report its findings and recommendations to the state Senate Committee on Transportation, Highways, and Public Works and the state House Committee on Transportation, Highways and Public Works no later than Dec. 13, according to the resolution .... Meanwhile, Lafayette has long made a push to finish I-49 South in and around its city limits. HNTB Corp., an engineering, construction and planning firm has been conducting studies for the Lafayette Metropolitan Expressway Commission. The firm finished a toll feasibility analysis recently, collecting data from late 2010 through the early part of this year, said David Flanders, vice president.
The study looked at tolls along an 18-mile stretch from Lafayette to the Acadiana Regional Airport exit and a 36-mile stretch from Lafayette to Iberia Parish’s southern border, Flanders said.

This article reports that the Lafayette Metropolitan Expressway Commission is suspending its toll study until LaDOTD completes its study, but will "refocus" its efforts after the LaDOTD study is released:

Quote
The Expressway Commission on Tuesday announced that it has suspended further work on the toll study pending an I-49 toll report by the state Department of Transportation and Development on the possibility of using tolls to help pay for the full length from Lafayette to New Orleans. 
The Legislature earlier this year asked DOTD to issue the report by December.
Expressway Commissioner Elaine Abell said the commission will provide its past research on toll funding to DOTD.
“They can piggyback and use what we already have,” she said .... Abell said the Expressway Commission plans to refocus its efforts after the completion of the DOTD study.
“We’ve got to press this to get this moving,” she said.

The article also makes a vague reference to the possibility that the new federal transportation bill, MAP-21, might provide increased funding opportunities for I-49 South, but no specifics are provided:

Quote
The Expressway Commission on Tuesday also heard of new I-49 funding possibilities in the federal transportation bill that went into effect earlier this year.
It’s too early to tell if I-49 might be a good candidate for substantial federal funding under the new bill, but the prospects seem better than in past years, said Kam Movassaghi, president of Lafayette consulting firm Fenstermaker.
“What is exciting is that there are some opportunities,” Movassaghi said.

Perhaps Movassaghi is referring to the "regional and national" significance of I-49 South?
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Grzrd

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #347 on: September 20, 2012, 03:48:21 PM »

LaDOTD has updated the I-49 North page on its website, with the page indicating that right-of-way purchase and utility relocation have been completed for Segments J & K, with construction to begin on Segment J (MLK Blvd.-La. 1) in the first quarter of 2013 and on Segment K (I-220 to MLK Blvd.) in 2014:

Quote
Right-of-way purchase and utility relocation have been completed for all sections

Construction Completion Schedules
Arkansas state line to La. 168, Segment A - Complete
La 168 to Mira-Myrtis Road, Segment B - Complete
Mira-Myrtis Road to La 2, Segment C - Complete
La 2 to U.S. 71, Segment D - Complete
La. 170 to U.S. 71, Segment E – Estimated completion: Spring 2013
La. 530 to La. 170, Segment F – Estimated completion: Spring 2013
La 530 to La 169, Segment G – Estimated completion: Spring 2013
La. 173 to La. 169, Segment H – Estimated completion: Spring 2013
La. 1 to La. 173, Segment I – Estimated completion: Spring 2013
I-220 to La. 1, Segment J (MLK Blvd.-La. 1) To begin Q1 2013
I-220 to La. 1, Segment K (I-220 to MLK Blvd.) To begin in 2014

Anticipated opening dates are as follows:

Quote
Opening for segments A-I are scheduled for the summer of 2013, leaving the final two segments (J-K) to be completed in 2016.

Everything still appears to be on track.
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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #348 on: September 22, 2012, 11:59:14 AM »

Interesting new article at the Lafayette Daily Advertiser this morn updating the status of both I-49 North and I-49 South.

Seems like the state is now totally committed to completing all of I-49 North from I-220 to the Arkansas line by 2016, and the Inner City Connector segment in Shreveport should have a Public Hearing done in December (when the Draft EIS is scheduled to be issued).

Quote
Every section of Interstate 49 North, except through the City of Shreveport, should be open to traffic in 2016, and work is under way to make U.S. 90 worthy of being I-49 South.

Michael Bridges of the Department of Transportation and Development told the Joint Budget Committee Friday that the $634.1 million construction of I-49 North from I-220 to the Arkansas state line is fully funded and should be complete on time. Bids have been let on the final section north of Shreveport and the only remaining portion would be the most expensive per-mile segment, through the city.

The section linking I-20 to I-220 is expected to cost $350 million but an environmental impact study of the route has not been completed.

State Rep. Roy Burrell, D-Shreveport, said the group doing the study is nearing completion and is to have a public hearing in December to review proposed routes.

The process takes two years, he said, "but I'm still optimistic about it."

Burrell said he believes the $350 million price tag is "too high" because "it's 3.6 miles through the city and only about one mile of that is developed." That area is sparsely populated because "people died or moved out and young people don't want to move back into that area."

Although he supports the project, "I couldn't support just a big slab of concrete going through the city," Burrell said. He wants some redevelopment of the area to accompany the highway construction to help stimulate private development.

State Rep. Henry Burns, R-Haughton, was the most recent chairman of the I-49 Funding and Feasibility Committee. He said that after he got commitments from Gov. Bobby Jindal, State Treasurer John Kennedy and DOTD that the money would be there, "I quit calling meetings."

Burns said he got a notice from the governor's office three weeks ago that "I was fired" because the committee was dissolved.

And as far as I-49 South is concerned:

Quote
I-49 is to ultimately link New Orleans and Canada, connecting with other interstate highways in Kansas City.

Completing it from Lafayette, its official southern terminus, to Kenner has some problem areas, Bridges said, though sections of the route are designated I-49 and carry 70 mph speed limits.

Like Shreveport, passing through Lafayette will be expensive, as will two other sections.

An elevated I-49 South through Lafayette, a section in St. Mary Parish known as the Wax Lake Outlet segment, and an elevated portion linking Raceland to the West Bank Expressway in Kenner are estimated to cost $5 billion.

The route utilizes an already four-laned U.S. 90 but it's not built to interstate standards. Overpasses have been constructed at numerous intersections but many are still have stop signs or traffic lights at crossing streets. In numerous places, residential and commercial driveways intersect the highway.

Bridges said DOTD is working on more overpasses and constructing access roads so cross roads and driveways can be eliminated, yet traffic could still cross or have access to the highway at interchanges.

DOTD records show that $265.6 million has been appropriated or is available for upgrading U.S 90.

That includes $114 million in federal highway funds and $29.4 million in federal stimulus dollars, $45 million from unclaimed property funds 2008-12, state surplus dollars totaling $11 million in 2007 and $30.3 million in 2009, $20 million in a direct legislative allocation in 2008, $8.8 million in state Transportation Trust Fund dollars, $3.5 million in general obligation bonds and a $3.65 million line of credit.

When the I-49 North work is completed, all of the $30 million per year in unclaimed property funds are to be shifted to I-49 South construction.

Probably sitll on hold until the I-49 South toll study by LADOTD is released later this year.

Link to the full Daily Advertiser article:
http://www.theadvertiser.com/article/20120922/NEWS01/209220312/


Anthony
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mcdonaat

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Re: I49 in LA
« Reply #349 on: September 23, 2012, 02:06:58 AM »

I support I-49 tolls completely. Nobody is forcing drivers to use US 90, there's the viable and fully capable LA 182 following US 90.

 


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