U.S. Department of Transportation provides $88.3 million loan to build the LA 1/LA 415 Connector project in Port Allen – West Baton Rouge Parish
Tuesday, December 19, 2023 at 10:55:17 AM
BATON ROUGE – The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD) announces receipt of an $88.3 million federal loan to fund a $268 million project to connect LA 1 and LA 415 at Interstate 10 in Port Allen. The 2.6-mile project calls for building a new connector between LA 1 near LA 988 (Beaulieu Lane) and I-10 at the LA 415 interchange. It includes a new four-lane roadway and bridges over the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway.

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Build America Bureau has provided the low-interest Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) loan to DOTD through the Louisiana State Bond Commission. To finance the loan, DOTD has leveraged BP settlement agreement/Act 443 funds. The project also has $38 million in additional federal funding.

This is the final closing in a package of seven TIFIA loans borrowed by DOTD for project development and construction. DOTD Secretary Eric Kalivoda said loans for these eligible projects means they are shovel-ready in a shorter time frame.

“If all projects funded by the BP settlement were to be funded on a PAYGO only basis, the construction would not be able to begin until 2025,” Kalivoda said. “By prioritizing the eligible projects that are ready, and accelerating construction by borrowing through the federal Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) program against the BP settlement funding, the state has accelerated the project lettings by four years and saved approximately $75 million in inflations costs from a delayed construction start.”

“The project is critical to improving resiliency and enhancing safety by providing a direct connection and evacuation route for areas south of I-10,” said USDOT Deputy Transportation Secretary Polly Trottenberg. “The new access west of LA 1 will also support regional economic growth for residents and businesses in this rural area.”

“Louisiana strategically leveraged funding from a settlement with BP to finance a bundle of projects, which helped make the loan process more efficient,” said Build America Bureau Executive Director Morteza Farajian. “This is the state’s seventh loan closed since 2021 for a total of $227 million, accelerating delivery of critical transportation solutions.”

Construction on the LA 415 connector project is anticipated to start in late 2025 or early 2026. The project is projected to reach substantial completion in late 2028.