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DOTD to host Forum on elevated highway over Evangeline thruway Thursday

Evangeline Thruway traffic.PNG
Posted at 11:42 PM, Nov 03, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-04 09:37:58-04

The Evangeline Thruway could look different in the future.

DOTD is welcoming more commentary from the community on the I-49 to I-10 connector that could bring a more innovative way of traveling to Lafayette.

According to DOTD, the I-10 to I-49 connector will be an elevated interstate following the Evangeline Thruway to the airport.

The project has been in the works for years but Michael DeSelle, assistant district administrator of engineering at DOTD says, their district office along with consultants are currently working on the environmental impact statement, while asking for public opinions on the project.

“The interstate would be elevated above the current thruway and the thruway would still be in existence for local traffic to use and the theory is that the pass through traffic will use the I-49 section that’s elevated and the local traffic will use the existing thruway,” DeSelle said.

DOTD is currently looking at several models for the project consisting of new pedestrian walkways as well as roundabouts along the thruway that will allow traffic to move more efficiently.

“Moving that thruway traffic off of the thruway will reduce the amount of traffic on the thruway number one, which is going to make it safer for local traffic utilizing the thruway and for the commoner it’s going to move traffic through Lafayette a lot more efficiently. They won’t have to worry about red lights anymore. You won’t have red lights on the interstate obviously,” Deselle said.

DeSelle says the environmental impact statement is expected to be completed by mid-2022, consultants will then complete the designing process in 2023 followed by a bid off to contractors before starting construction.

“We believe the more public input we get, then the more opinions we have, the more options we have to look at, and the more data we have on what the community believes would be best for this area when it comes to the design of the I-49 connector project.

DOTD will be accepting public commentary on the connector project Thursday, November 4, from 4:30p.m. to 8:00 pm at the Lafayette Science Museum.

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