Louisiana is set to receive approximately $1 billion over the course of five years through the Bridge Formula Program administered by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) as part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The Edwards administration has allocated approximately $270 million specifically for the purpose of off-system bridge repair and replacement projects.
The state of Louisiana has more than 4,700 locally owned bridges, with 747 in need of rehabilitation or replacement. Last year, DOTD closed 25 locally owned bridges, and 31 have been closed this year to date.
DOTD has executed contracts with consultants to speed up the delivery of this funding. The consultants will work with the parishes in each of the nine DOTD districts to determine which bridges will be repaired or replaced. Bridges that meet the criteria specified in the BIL Bridge Formula Program for off-system structures and the FHWA criteria for repair or replacement will be eligible.
“Bridges connect communities and, with an aging infrastructure system, we are actively working to ensure continued connectivity for all types of road users in these parishes,” said DOTD Secretary Shawn D. Wilson, Ph.D. “Executing a consultant contract for each district will allow us to speed up the project development process and make the most of this historic investment in our infrastructure system while relying on local leadership for prioritization.”
DOTD’s role is to help guide parishes through the process and strategically allocate this funding to address as many eligible structures across the state as possible.