Jimmie Davis bridge closure delayed

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A public meeting was held May 12 at Barksdale Baptist Church to show community members proposed plans and options for the Jimmie Davis Bridge rehabilitation project. Plans to close the south Bossier bridge have been delayed and Louisiana Department of Transportation says the structure won't close until late summer. DOTD is seeking public comment on future plans for the bridge until May 25.

Plans to close the Jimmie Davis Bridge have been delayed.

The south Bossier bridge was expected to close at the beginning of the year in preparation for maintenance projects to begin this spring. However, Louisiana Department of Transportation now says it won’t close until later this summer.

The bridge is set to close for a year, but the contractor recently requested a 90-day extension for the assembly period, which means work that requires closure won’t start before August. The project will include re-decking, adding lights, and painting the bridge purple.

In the meantime, DOTD has released the results of a conducted feasibility study, which outline several options for increasing traffic flow across the Red River. Proposals include building a completely new 4-lane structure and removing the original bridge and leaving the existing bridge and adding a second structure.

With each proposal, though, come several alternatives to decide on based upon access points and traffic signal locations. One option is to remove the traffic signal at CenturyLink Center Drive and construct a new service road to access the bridge. Another alternative is to create a three-lane extension of Reeves Marine Drive to accommodate future development.

The existing structure is almost 50 years old and has nearly 30,000 cars using it daily.

DOTD is seeking public comment on future plans for the bridge. Official comment can be made by mail, email, or telephone. Deadline for submitted comments is Monday, May 25. Comments must include name and address.

Mail comments to Red River Bridge at Jimmie Davis Highway EA, P.O. Box 56845, New Orleans, LA 70156.

Comments via phone can be made at 1-877-280-8774. E-mail comments can be submitted to comments@redriverbridgeea.com.

A copy of the Environmental Assessment is available for review at the following places:

Bossier City Hall

620 Benton Road

Bossier City, LA 71171

Shreveport City Hall

505 Travis St.

Shreveport, LA 71101

Northwest Louisiana Council of Governments

625 Texas Street, Suite 200

Shreveport, Louisiana 71101