Work Has Begun on Construction of New Jimmie Davis Bridge
A majority of the citizens of North Louisiana who regularly travel across the Red River on the present Jimmie Davis Bridge have believed this day would never come, but apparently it has.
Yesterday, December 5, 2023, the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development announced they have begun preliminary site work for the $361 million construction project to build a new LA 511 (Jimmie Davis Bridge) over the Red River connecting Bossier and Caddo Parishes.
While major elements of the project, such as the new bridge and roadway approaches, are still in the design phase, the traveling public will notice preliminary activity taking place near the foot of the existing bridge.
In a story by the Louisiana Radio Network, DOTD spokesperson Erin Buchanan said that the initial stage of this project involves the clearing of debris and vegetation near the foot of the existing bridge.
“For that particular area, this is along the Red River so there’s a lot of vegetation that’s there so the clearing and grubbing for this particular project is going to be pretty extensive a lot of trees need to be removed, and that sort of thing.”
Buchanan says major construction on the four-lane bridge is still about a year away as design work continues. She says the design phase also includes transforming the existing structure into a linear park.
“It’ll be a state park. So it’ll be outfitted for pedestrian and bicycle traffic and you’ll be able to be connected to the walking trails that are on each side.”
Additionally, a crane has been assembled on site, and steel has arrived for the purpose of assembling a trestle bridge that will be used by work crews during construction of the new bridge spans.
The Jimmie Davis Bridge is a design-build project that is expected to take approximately five years to fully complete.
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Gallery Credit: Gary McCoy