Intracoastal Bridge replacement project delayed
WEST BATON ROUGE PARISH, La. (WAFB) - Drivers will face delays on a project to replace the Intracoastal Bridge in West Baton Rouge Parish.
The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development started phase one of the project back in April of 2022.
Crews were focused on replacing the southbound Intracoastal Bridge with a brand new one. It will eventually include three 12-foot lanes and 10-foot shoulders to reduce bottlenecks.
However, the new bridge will have to wait for at least 10 months.
“In Louisiana, because of our soil, we are going to have sinking,” said Rodney Mallett, a spokesman with DOTD. “When we are building this bridge, you know, we anticipate it to settle. Some of the piers, especially the ones that are really close to the Intracoastal Waterway, were settling more than we anticipated.”
Mallett said they caught the issue just in time and are going to put down grout to stop piers from sinking.
“Occasionally, something like this will happen. As a matter of fact, our geotechnical folks and our engineering folks do not remember anything happening at this level during their careers here,” Mallett said.
Taylor Harvey works at Chabill’s Tire and Auto Service near the Intracoastal Bridge and said she and her co-workers can’t wait for the new bridges.
“The way they have the road now, it can cause problems with traffic and traffic getting backed up,” Harvey said. “That causes problems for our customers. Especially since we’re open Monday through Friday, so you know a lot of people have to take time off work to come here. They want to get things done within a certain amount of time, but with traffic, it can make that impossible.”
The entire project of replacing the bridges will cost more than $57 million.
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