DOTD to analyze possible closure of I-20 westbound as part of major construction project in Bossier City
Friday, February 16, 2024 at 2:42:58 PM

DOTD to analyze possible closure of I-20 westbound as part of major construction project in Bossier City

BOSSIER CITY – Previous reports of the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD) closing I-20 closing later this month were incorrect. Local officials, local and state law enforcement, and DOTD are working together to increase awareness and enforcement of the work zone laws, such as no trucks on I-20 and slower speeds in the work zone. For the next two months, DOTD will analyze the data and determine if there is a need for a full closure of I-20 westbound during the $117 million major reconstruction project in Bossier City.

Over the next couple of months, DOTD and area law enforcement will monitor the type and number of incidents and crashes, particularly those involving 18-wheelers, that continue to significantly impact travel in the region. Recent incidents have resulted in hours-long interstate closures to remove large trucks, as well as damage to the roadway embankment that must be repaired by the project’s contractor, which causes delays in the completion of the overall project.

As a reminder, all commercial vehicles were prohibited from traveling through the work zone in December 2023. If a closure is deemed necessary due to continued crashes, all vehicles traveling westbound on I-20 will be detoured to I-220 westbound (Exit 26), located just east of the current project limits. Also being considered is the addition of another lane at the I-220 westbound off-ramp in order to handle the increase in traffic volume that would be exiting at this location.

If a westbound closure of I-20 is approved, it would serve to expedite construction on the section of the interstate that is currently being replaced. The contractor (J.B. James Construction) would remove the remaining existing travel lanes on I-20 westbound, as well as all of the westbound on and off-ramps at the various interchanges, and proceed with replacing all at once rather than separating this work into two phases. This type of traffic configuration is anticipated to speed up this portion of work with the combination of construction phases.

Overall, this project involves fully removing all of the existing pavement and roadway base from Hamilton Road to Industrial Drive, and replacing with new base and concrete, including all of the entrance and exit ramps along this section.

Many factors must be considered, including traffic impacts, safety for motorists, benefits to the project, and economic repercussions, and the decision to enact an interstate closure is never taken lightly and made with all of those factors in mind. The general public will be notified well in advance if such a decision is made.

There are no plans at this time to close I-20 eastbound. That will remain in its current configuration of one open lane, and large commercial motor vehicles such as 18-wheelers are still prohibited from traveling through the work zone in that direction.

Travelers may check or download the Louisiana 511 mobile app to monitor conditions in real time.

Click here to access additional resources and project information.

Contact information:

Erin Buchanan
Public Information Officer
Shreveport-Bossier District
(318) 549-8402