Major Interstate 20 Reconstruction: Traffic Delays Ahead in Shreveport-Bossier
A three-and-a-half mile reconstruction of I-20 in Shreveport-Bossier City is expected to bring traffic down to one-lane, in both directions, for the next two-and-a-half years.
Major road Construction is soon coming to northwest Louisiana involving a portion of Interstate 20. And the massive project is expected to affect between 70 to 100,000 drivers every day for the next two-and-a- half years. That’s the word from the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development. Work gets underway in less than two weeks on Interstate-20, closing one lane of traffic in both directions.
This $117.6 million project will fully rebuild a three-and-a-half-mile stretch of the interstate, beginning just east of the Red River from Hamilton Road to Industrial Drive in Bossier City. The state announcement also spells out another seven miles of concrete pavement repair in Shreveport, from Pines Road in West Shreveport to Market Street downtown. In Bossier City, the repair work will take place on the eastern end of the project, from Industrial Drive to Interstate-220.
In fact, I-220 which encircles the northern portion of the city, will serve as an alternate route to avoid delays for drivers headed through the road construction.
The announcement came Wednesday [Sept. 6] morning at the Bossier Civic Center, where Bossier Chamber President Lisa Johnson gave out a very clear request to representatives of the more than 700 chamber members, and their 60,000 employees for this years-long project. “I encourage you, as leaders in this room today, because you are a leader in this project, and help spread the word, that you keep this as positive as possible, that you prepare and that you share the positivity because construction and orange barrels mean progress.”
Johnson says they wanted to give businesses advanced notice of nearly two weeks, so they can prepare accordingly. Business preparations can come in many different forms. For example, a business owner may determine new signage is necessary for its customers. Choosing alternate routes will also require an owner to coordinate with its suppliers and employees before the construction gets underway.
The spokesperson for the Shreveport-Bossier District of the Louisiana DOTD, Erin Buchanan, explained to the standing room only crowd that the I-20 project will utilize what she calls an innovative traffic management system. It can communicate the very latest traffic flow and back-ups instantaneously to those hi-tech digital message boards. These message boards can also communicate an alert that drivers may need to know right away.
Buchanan says “It’s an automated system that works with sensors placed at various locations. So, it senses the changes to traffic. Has it backed-up? Has it alleviated? As it changes the message that’s on each of these boards.”
Drivers are likely to become very acquainted with those large digital message boards on I-20 and Interstate-49 once this huge I-20 road project gets underway on Monday, September 18.
The Louisiana Department of Transportation has created a webpage to assist you with updates, questions, etc.: https://wwwapps.dotd.la.gov/administration/announcements/Announcement.aspx?key=33715