DOTD opens bids for the Jimmie Davis Bridge Replacement Project
Tuesday, February 28, 2023 at 3:48:54 PM
Bossier-Caddo parishes - Today, Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD) Secretary Shawn D. Wilson, Ph.D. held the opening of the price proposals for the Jimmie Davis Bridge design-build project in Bossier and Caddo parishes, while local officials and stakeholders were invited to participate virtually.

These proposals were reviewed extensively for their ability to efficiently complete the project while minimizing effects on the traveling public before selecting. Of the two design-build teams who submitted proposals at the end of January 2023, James Construction Group is the apparent successful proposer for the project, with a bid of $361,743,367. DOTD estimated the bid to be approximately $223 million. Both of the proposals presented a unique and efficient design that would reduce traffic congestion in the area.

“The Jimmie Davis Bridge was opened to traffic in 1968, the year before I was born, and has served the surrounding community for 55 years. It has reached the end of its useful life span,” said Wilson. “During this time of unprecedented inflation and price volatility, we will carefully review the price proposal that is over 50 percent of the department’s estimate. Such a swing is not unexpected and will require us to work with the legislature to close the gap. Delaying the project is not likely to result in an extremely lower price.”

Dr. Wilson went on to say, “This new bridge will serve as a major crossing over the Red River, and it will allow Louisiana to have its first linear bridge park by repurposing the historic, original bridge, which will benefit the local residents by providing more pedestrian-friendly infrastructure while keeping a piece of the region’s history.”

The intent of the design-build project is to construct a new four-lane bridge parallel to the existing structure. Once complete, the current bridge will be rehabilitated into a linear park that will connect the existing bicycle and pedestrian trails across the Red River. At that point, it will be transferred to Louisiana State Parks. Additionally, LA 511 (Jimmie Davis Hwy.) will be reconstructed from the east end of the Jimmie Davis Bridge to U.S. 71 (Barksdale Blvd.) into a four-lane, median-divided highway, providing a full-access interchange between LA 511 and Arthur Ray Teague Pkwy.

The Jimmie Davis Bridge Replacement Project is being funded through allocations from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law signed by President Biden and supported by Sen. Bill Cassidy and Congressman Troy Carter, the American Rescue Plan Act, and state bonds. Additional funds are being identified to ensure a successful delivery of the project. If accepted, the construction is anticipated to begin in late 2023, with an estimated completion of 2027, weather permitting.