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Tuesday, Sept. 7, 2021

Short Cuts

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Toll bridge proposed for southern Shreveport, Bossier

A private roadway and bridge linking

Caddo and Bossier parishes across the Red River have been proposed.

The estimated cost of the project is $60 million to $80 million. The project

would be funded by Tim James Inc. This company proposed the project, according

to William Bradford, the local liaison for the Greenville, Ala.- based infrastructure firm.

“Tim James looks for projects like this,” Bradford said. “He was looking for growth and expansion in his business. He has some relationships here in Shreveport. He looked at our issues here, where a river separates two economically thriving communities — south Shreveport and south Bossier City — and the need to improve transit between the two. So he saw it as a viable option for is next project.”

Design is still ongoing, Bradford said.

The proposed route is approximately eight miles and would connect Flournoy Lucas Road in Shreveport to Highway 71 in south Bossier City. The route will include a toll bridge to cross the river.

Early projects estimate the toll will be $2 for most private vehicles and more for multi-axle vehicles, Bradford said. Emergency and public service vehicles would not pay a toll.

According to a news release, the project’s goal is to reduce travel time between the parishes and increase economic commerce across the region.

The Port of Caddo- Bossier is one entity that could benefit from the project.

“This roadway and bridge are in close proximity to the 4,000-acre Port of Caddo-Bossier Complex and will immensely enhance the logistics and transportation efficiency of our tenants and customers,” Eric England, executive director at the Port, said in the release.

The route traverses several miles of private property. Project developers would have to purchase a small portion of right-of-way near 3132 and Flournoy Lucas Road from the city of Shreveport.

“We want to make sure the public is aware we are very early in the process,” Bradford said. “We want to be deliberate and have as much public input as possible. We are aware of the neighborhoods and stakeholders involved.”

The next step is for Tim James and the respective parish officials to negotiate the required ordinances and cooperative endeavor agreements.

“The negotiations with landowners are nearly complete,” Bradford said. “We have submitted those ordinances for review. The next step is to have those discussions. We’d like to see those approved at end of September.”

After approval, local engineering firm Volkert will be working on environmental studies and approval from the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Red River Waterway Commission and other agencies with regulatory authority, Bradford said.

Tim James is an infrastructure company that specializes in privately owned toll bridges. The company’s projects include a bridge in central Alabama to connect U.S. Highway 280 with Interstate 65 and a route connecting Interstate 10 to the Alabama beaches. The privately owned company was founded in 2019. For more information, visit the company’s website at timjamiesinc.com.

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