Officials break ground on Bayou Chevreuil bridge replacement project in St. James Parish
Thursday, December 10, 2020 at 2:18:49 PM
St. James Parish- Today, Department of Transportation and Development Secretary Shawn D. Wilson, Ph.D., was joined by state and local officials to break ground on the Bayou Chevreuil bridge replacement project along LA 20 in St. James Parish.

“For our southern region, this project is critical and will support the needs of commuters and the industry that uses this corridor for the transportation of goods and materials,” said Secretary Wilson. “This bridge is used as a major freight corridor, serving as the connector between Bayou Lafourche and the Mississippi River, as well as a majority of Louisiana’s cane industry. This project also serves as the precursor to the upcoming safety improvements along LA 20.”

This $11.6 million project will replace the current bridge over Bayou Chevreuil with a new wider and longer structure that will be built along the same horizontal alignment as the current one. In order to facilitate traffic while construction is ongoing, crews will build a temporary detour bridge along the east side of LA 20. Once completed, the bridge will be 40-foot-wide and 835 feet long, as well as approximately three and a half feet higher from the midpoint and six and a half feet higher at both ends than the existing bridge.

Currently, there are over 9,000 motorists who travel this bridge daily. By 2039, this is projected to increase to over 13,00 vehicles. This bridge replacement was needed in order to move forward with a safety improvement project to widen LA 20 approximately three miles in St. James and Lafourche parishes is anticipated to go to bid in early 2022.

“This is a project that has been in the works for nearly five years now and I am proud of the hard work and dedication that brought this project to life,” said Senator Ed Price. “This proves that when you bring people together, you can make things happen.”

“This is just the first step of many to improve the Hwy. 20 corridor,” said Representative Ken Brass. “I am confident this project will improve safety for not only the residents of St. James and Lafourche but for all the travelers who use this roadway that connects these two parishes.”

“As a 20-year law enforcement veteran, I remember the many fatalities. This project was built by a collaborative effort to make this project a success and a safer avenue for our citizens to travel to their homes and jobs,” said Representative Bryan Fontenot.

“The safety of the residents of St. James is a top priority and replacing this bridge is among those projects of great importance. I would like to personally thank the taskforce who has advocated for this project over the last five years,” said St. James President Pete Dufresne.

“I appreciate our state and local leaders who continue to make investments in infrastructure across Louisiana. This road transports millions of dollars of goods every day and thousands who drive agriculture commodities along this corridor,” said Lafourche Parish President Archie Chaisson.

The contractor, TL Hawk, began construction in November on the driveway access for the new boat launch. The project is estimated to be completed Spring 2022, weather dependent.