DOTD holds public meeting to discuss revised alternatives for Church Street Bridge replacement project

Bridge MeetingTOP
The Louisiana Dept. of Transportation and Development held a public meeting Nov. 1 for the Church Street Bridge Project. This is the second public meeting DOTD has held to gather input on the proposed replacement of the bridge.

After receiving feedback toward the end of 2017, an alternative option was eliminated (Highland Park temporary bridge). The refined alternatives are as follows:

#1 Replace existing bridge on a skewed angle to tie the east end of the bridge directly to St. Clair Avenue, eliminating the existing offset intersection. In addition, a temporary bridge is proposed at Touline Street so traffic is redirected temporarily.

#2 Replace the existing bridge along the same alignment. In addition, a temporary bridge is proposed at Touline Street so traffic is redirected temporarily.

#3 Demolish existing bridge and replace it on a skewed alignment to tie the east end of the bridge directly to St. Clair Avenue, eliminating the existing offset intersection. No temporary bridge will be built, so traffic will be detoured during the construction process.

#4 Demolish existing bridge and replace it along the same alignment. No temporary bridge will be built, so traffic will be detoured during the construction process.

All alternatives propose to replace the existing bridge with a three-lane section including two 12-foot wide travel lanes and a 12-foot wide center turning lane with 4-foot wide outside shoulders and two 6-foot wide sidewalks with concrete barriers. The temporary bridge proposed at Touline Street will consist of two 12-foot travel lanes.

This project is estimated to cost approximately $6-8 million depending on whether or not a temporary bridge is constructed (approximately $2 million). Construction is projected to start in 2024, although DOTD is looking into escalating this timeframe due to the current poor condition of the bridge. The entire construction phase is expected to take 11 months. If no temporary bridge is built, traffic studies indicate the redirection of traffic during the construction process will add 15 minutes to travel time.

Any impact the bridge construction has on the newly renovated riverbank or the trees in close proximity to the bridge will be fixed (trees replanted if removed) by DOTD at the end of the construction process.

Next steps:

Complete environmental inventory

Develop preferred alternative

Prepare environmental assessment

Distribute environmental assessment for public and agency comments

Host public hearing

Prepare environmental assessment and finding of no significant impact (if appropriate)

Issue decision

Cane River Bridge Church Street Route LA 1-X
State Project No. H.001271
Federal Project No. H001271

Comments will be accepted through Nov. 12. Mail to: Louisiana Department of Transportation, Environmental Engineer Administrator, Section 28, P.O. Box 94245, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70804-9245.

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17 thoughts on “DOTD holds public meeting to discuss revised alternatives for Church Street Bridge replacement project

  1. The Bridge should be offset to run directly into St. Clair. The Front St. side should have a middle lane to go straight onto Church Street the right should be for right turn. No left turn.

  2. You’re going to have 3 or 4 people who decides what plan they are going to use. Just build the thing and be done with it. And two blocks down the street on both sides you will still have manhole covers that will knock you car out of line. But front street will be ready!

    • i agree with Mike,the decision has already been made probably by 3 people
      who have some pull and the people will have no say in matter.the will build the bridge cheaply and divide the saving among themselves.

  3. Makes no sense to route a major State highway through the Natchitoches Historic District. Put the bridge upstream where it belongs, to connect with the by-pass.

  4. I do not agree with wasting money on a temporary bridge. Put that money on the new bridge and make it flow onto St. Claire. Good idea to make a center lane going straight and another to turn left as was suggested.

  5. make it a draw bridge so we can bring in cruise ships and cargo vessels
    they can stay in hotels and pilger our woman,hey its money coming in .

  6. environmental impact in La ? you have an oil spill every other day,no telling
    whats in this soil just break ground and go…….

  7. The libs love to use environmental laws to cause slow downs in construction and add to the cost so they can dip in for their share.

  8. make the new bridge a toll bridge and charge taxes to help fund hotel
    and front street.two birds with one stone.

    • I doubt anybody would agree to that, but how about parking meters along Front Street and some of the side streets…. But funds shouldn’t go to hotel and Front Street. Should go to some of the schools falling down around here or a new shelter for cats.

      • we need a helicopter to assist with traffic.I will not nor would I use my last breath help with shelter for cats .If we build a shelter for cats,we should start saving wood and build homes for homeless birds so they have a warm place to stay .

  9. Widening the Church Street Bridge, not matter if it’s skewed or not, will allow left turns onto Front Street. Has anybody asked how increased traffic on that side of Front Street will be addressed. When’s the last time you tried to get from downtown to Kyser during rush hour? All those cars trying to turn onto Front from Amulet?

    • You’re right, the alternative that would be feasible would be to have the middle lane go straight in that direction, with the right lane being a turn lane.

  10. Environmental concerns? Stupid waste of money. Somebody’s cousin will get a taxpayer paid contract to “study” the impact of replacing a bridge. DUH!!! Ask anyone on the street, they can tell you exactly what will happen, and for free!

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