Bossier jurors eyeing D.C. for possible funds

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With one major infrastructure project in its initial stage and another being planned for the future, Bossier Parish is keeping a watchful eye on the nation’s capitol to see if one promise is going to become a reality.

“The president is talking about putting together a one trillion dollar infrastructure package,” Parish Engineer Butch Ford said. “If the president comes down with a package that puts in another trillion, we want to be up there with our flag saying we want some money, too.”

Ford told parish police jury members the possibility of seeing a share of infrastructure funds makes the projects more attractive. Grubbing and clearing has already begun on phase one of the Swan Lake Rd. project and construction is expected to begin in the fall.

“We’re getting ready to start the north/south corridor on Swan Lake Rd. on a 20 percent basis. It’s going to be around $3.2 to $3.5 million and we’ve got to fund that over the next three years,” he explained.

And the price tag on an east/west corridor, which is in the early planning stages, could run as much as $50 million. Ford said he might want to talk to the North Louisiana Council on Governments (NLCOG) and the state to see if 80 percent of the funds for the project could be provided.

Work on clearing rights-of-way for the first phase of a new Swan Lake Rd. is moving ahead and Ford said he and his staff will soon meet with utility companies that have lines and equipment along the roadway.

“We will put the on 60-days notice to move their utilities so we can go ahead with our project this fall,” he said.

Phase one of the Swan Lake Rd. project will extend roughly three miles north from Interstate 220 to the Flat River. The first mile beginning at the I-220 interchange will be a three-lane roadway. Plans also call for a pair of dramatic curves to be straightened.