Baton Rouge Loop Plans

POSTED: Monday, December 5, 2011 - 10:07pm

UPDATED: Thursday, December 8, 2011 - 4:05pm

Plans to build a highway loop around Baton Rouge are alive and well, as members of the public came to a hearing at BREC headquarters Monday to see if the latest plans would bring the highway literally right into their backyard.

"We lost our home in New Orleans, in Katrina," said Charles McKee, of Baton Rouge, "moved up here right into the loop, (I'm) very concerned."

McKee says his home was initially in the bullseye for development of the loop. He was relieved Monday to see that his Greenwood subdivision had been spared.

"Hope the project is a success," said McKee. "But I still feel sorry for the people impacted by it."

In efforts to deal with the deadlock of traffic through Baton Rouge, the loop would cut a swath through five parishes surrounding the Capital. Officials say plans were drawn to minimize impact to populated areas, but some private landowners will be affected.

Don Ristroph is conflicted about the project. He's quick to point out the many positives of diverting traffic, and the new development sure to come, but the price he would pay is his property in Iberville Parish..

"Negative impact on me, said Ristroph, "but overall, it's a positive project to have."

Mike Bruce with ABMB Engineering is a leading consultant on the project. He said potential funding sources have been identified, and federal guidelines for the work are quickly being met.

"We could be under construction and driving on segments of the road in the next four to five years," Bruce said.

A public hearing will be held tomorrow at St. John the Evangelist School, in Plaquemine.

Comments News Comments

The plans submitted are not any different that those previously submitted just some corridors have been taken off. The maps used at the Denham Springs meeting are from 2007. There has been a lot of additional construction to the Watson area since these maps and studies have been done. If you want to build a "loop" you should go further north and used unpopulated areas: not use area where people will lose their homes, churches and schools. It just shows that these studies didn't take into account the developments that were on the books. The Northern loop into Watson will take out the new high school under construction or the the newly built pall park. Two areas that you surely don't want a interstate; areas where we have young drivers and other children. No concrete evidence was given that this "LOOP" will help the traffic just "IF'S". The public better get wise to the project..another way to take the property from hard working people so some developer and foreign company can make money. Who are the investors? What guarantees are these investors being given? NO LOOP WE DON'T WANT IT.

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