DOTD Boss: ‘I-49 Innercity Connector in Shreveport Is in Jeopardy’
The I-49 Innercity Connector could be in jeopardy with the changes in how the federal government is funding transportation projects.
DOTD Secretary Dr. Shawn Wilson says the project will cost 600 to 700 million dollars to complete that short stretch of the freeway in Shreveport. Dr. Wilson says we don't have the money to fund the project.
Dr. Wilson says he will proceed with the environmental study which will cost about 2 million. But we will have to find the money to fund construction of the project.
President Trump wants to pump $1.5 trillion into the nation's infrastructure, but Dr. Wilson says states will be required to put up a larger share of the money to get matching federal dollars and Wilson says Louisiana won't have money to invest to leverage those dollars.
Dr. Wilson says the federal transportation department wants to fund projects in states that also have a stake in getting the projects complete. He expects to see many states compete for these federal dollars with thinks like tolls, higher taxes and even private-public partnerships. But he says Louisiana is not in a position to beef up funding for our roads unless lawmakers take action.