Dec 17, 2010 9:27 AM by Nichole Larkey
LAFAYETTE, La. (AP) - The Lafayette Metropolitan Expressway Commission is exploring the possibility of collecting tolls to fund the completion of Interstate 49 through Lafayette.
Commission member Elaine Abell tells The Advocate that the panel will study whether traffic volumes would generate enough toll revenue to upgrade U.S. 90 to interstate standards from Interstate 10 south through Iberia Parish.
There is no estimate yet for the total project, but the cost of the elevated stretch through Lafayette has been estimated at $700 million.
The southern extension of I-49 has been on the drawing board for years, but the project has been on hold for lack of funding.
Abell said tolls might put the interstate on the fast track, assuming the fees can generate sufficient revenue.