Today, Governor Bobby Jindal highlighted a $2.3 million investment to repair and resurface more than nine miles of Highway 849 in Caldwell Parish, a route frequently used by the logging industry. The project will also make additional curve improvements on La. 849 to increase safety for the 1,250 vehicles that travel the route each day.
Governor Jindal said, "Many rural roads in our state went unrepaired for too long, resulting in potential safety hazards for drivers and less efficient routes for industry. That's why we made repairing rural highways a priority because we know that quality roads keep our people safer, help transfer goods faster and grow our economy. This project is yet another investment that will improve the infrastructure in Louisiana and make our state more attractive for new business investments."
The project is part of the Governor's initiative to bond out half of the State Highway Improvement Fund, which will generate $425 million over three years to repair approximately 1,100 miles of rural roads across Louisiana. The projects for the program were selected through DOTD's priority program based on traffic volumes and roadway assessments.
The Legislature passed a bill in the 2012 legislative session to bond out the State Highway Improvement Fund, which was created exclusively to fund state roads classified as Non-Federal Aid routes that are not eligible for federal funding and are mostly rural routes. Often these routes are not eligible for matching funds from the federal government, which means there is less money available to fund projects for rural roads throughout the state.
Since 2008, the Jindal Administration has made transportation and infrastructure projects a top priority by investing an unprecedented $5.6 billion in Louisiana's infrastructure.