Essen Lane Widening Project

With more than 55,000 daily drivers, the busy and heavily traveled segment of Essen Lane between Perkins Road and Jefferson Highway/Interstate 12 serves as an important transportation link for many residents, businesses and healthcare facilities. In particular, Essen Lane at Interstate 10 currently experiences a great deal of congestion during weekday peak driving periods – due in part to the volume of motorists entering and exiting the interstate at Essen Lane.

DOTD and the City of Baton Rouge are partnering in an effort to help relieve traffic congestion and accommodate growth along Essen Lane. This effort involves two separate projects, one of which will be overseen by the City of Baton Rouge and the other by DOTD, to reduce the bottlenecking that presently occurs.

While these will be two distinct projects overseen by one local agency and one state agency, our goal is to work as one team to communicate, coordinate efforts, and to the greatest extent we can, minimize the overall impact to the traveling public.

Phase 1:

The first phase of work on this project, which will be spearheaded by the City of Baton Rouge, involves the Essen Lane at
I-10 Interchange Improvements project, awarded to Command Construction Industries in February 2015 for $2.1 million. This work is being managed through the City-Parish's Green Light Plan – a comprehensive street and road improvements program authorized by voters in 2005 to help improve traffic conditions on some of the most congested arterial roadways in East Baton Rouge Parish.

This phase, which runs along Essen Lane from the bridge at Ward’s Creek to just south of United Plaza Boulevard, will add two additional turn lanes onto I-10 to provide dual left-turns for southbound and northbound Essen Lane. In addition, one lane will be added to the I-10 intersection of Essen Lane and Essen Park Avenue, as well as the two on- and off-ramps at I-10. Construction on this portion of work is estimated to begin in May 2015. Once construction begins, it is anticipated to last six months.

In addition, as part of Phase 1 of this project, DOTD will be responsible for utility relocations from Perkins Road to Wards Creek, as well as the widening of Wards Creek Bridge, which is estimated to begin in spring 2015 with construction expected to last approximately one-and-a-half years.

Phase 2: 

Once utilities are relocated, DOTD will manage the second phase of the Essen Lane Widening project.  It is estimated that the cost for the utility relocation, in addition to the roadway and bridge widening will cost approximately $12 million. The roadway widening is approximately one mile of Essen Lane from Perkins Road to I-10 from a five-lane roadway with a center turn lane to six lanes with a continuous, two-way center turn lane. The roadway construction is expected to be completed by spring 2018.    

For more information contact:

The Green Light Plan

Phone: 225-761-3600

Phone: 1-877-452-3683

We know road construction can present challenges, particularly when it takes place along a heavily-traveled commercial thoroughfare like Essen Lane.

Stay up-to-date with updates on the project and its progress, along with any potential traffic impacts as a result of this construction, by utilizing one of the following:

  • MyDOTD, a system that will allows you to sign up to receive road closure information via e-mail
  • DOTD's Facebook and Twitter (@BR_Traffic)
  • City of Baton Rouge’s Facebook and Twitter (@TheCityofBR)