Letter to the Editor – Residents oppose new bridge site – Vote is Tonight

Received December 11, 2016

Dear Everyone,

Attached in .pdf format is the Capital Outlay Request for the Highland Park Road Bridge Project as well as the complete language of Resolution 104.  Mr. Eddie Harrington provided me with these documents and he is very much against the project.

The Comments found on page 2 of the Capital Outlay Request below Mayor Posey’s certification are very troubling to Mr. Harrington and I’m sure many of you will feel the same.

The Comments section begins, “This project becomes a major link between East Natchitoches and West Natchitoches with a bridge over Cane River Lake in a critical location above the CBD and the National Historic Landmark District.  This new link connects two state highways, LA Highway #6 East (Washington Street) to LA Highway # 1226 (Williams Avenue).”

The Comments further state, “Our downtown bridge at Church Street is substandard and an alternate river crossing is critical to the continued growth and development of the City.”

Therefore, this application makes it clear that this is NOT about replacing the Church Street Bridge, but rather all about building a new bridge north of Church Street and most likely at the Highland Park proposed site or the Cane River North dam.

Resolution 104 further requires the City of Natchitoches will have to provide 25% local matching funds to the State of Louisiana’s capital outlay of $5,060,000.00.  So Natchitoches taxpayer monies in the amount of $1,301,980.00 will have to be spent on building a fourth bridge over Cane River located inside the city limits of Natchitoches.  I do not see the justification for building a fourth bridge, especially when the Church Street bridge will be expanded to three lanes.

Please let everyone you know who is interested in this project to come to the meeting tomorrow night at 5:30 p.m. at the Natchitoches Arts Center, 714 Second Street.  I believe the sign in sheet to speak at the meeting has to be signed by 5:15 p.m.  I hope to see you there.

Sincerely yours,

Bray Williams
1054 Williams Ave.
Natchitoches, LA 71457
352-6695 work
332-8459 cell