NEW ORLEANS, La. – The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (LADOTD) announced today that its Crescent City Connection Division (CCCD) has received an award from the Federal Highway Administration’s Ferry Boat Discretionary Program. The U.S. Transportation Department recently announced that $39 million was awarded to 20 states to help improve ferry service and provide more travel options. The parishes of Orleans, Jefferson and St. Bernard received a total of $1,230,180.
The motor vessel Thomas Jefferson received $1,034,000 to upgrade main engines and generators, which includes changing the current propulsion system from the old Z drive thrusters to a more conventional propeller and rudder system. Other boats servicing the three-parish area received another $196,180, which will help replace marine radar for the six vessels.
"We are very grateful to the Federal Highway Administration and our Baton Rouge colleagues for helping to facilitate and secure these much-needed funds," said David Miller, director of the CCCD. "We already have projects ready to go, so this award couldn’t have come at a better time."
Congress authorized the Federal Highway Administration's Ferry Boat Program to fund ferry boat projects that provide critical access to areas that lack other means of transportation where high passenger demand already exists, such as Algiers, Gretna and Chalmette. The money can be used for capital improvements to existing ferry operations, which could increase the number of riders, relieve congestion or address environmental or significant operational concerns.
In accordance with federal law, the federal share of the costs for any project eligible under this program is 80 percent. CCCD will meet its 20 percent split with money identified in the CCCD’s capital outlay funds.
Following the announcement of the grant award, a mock signing of a cooperative endeavor agreement was executed between the LADOTD and The Ferry Foundation (TFF), a local ferry advocacy group. The agreement allows TFF to soon begin improvements to the Algiers ferry terminal, including a new roof, painting and refurbishment of restrooms.
"The signing of today’s joint agreement signifies a new era of cooperation between the DOTD/CCCD and the people it serves," said TFF president Fay Faron. "We look forward to making it official very soon."
Once improvements are complete, TFF will install a colorful exhibit to welcome passengers and introduce them to a historical perspective of Algiers via rare photographs and images. More information can be found at www.theferryfoundation.org.
For more LADOTD information, please visit www.dotd.la.gov, email email@example.com, or call the Customer Service Center at (225) 379-1232 or 1-877-4LADOTD (1-877-452-3683). Business hours are 7:30 a.m. - 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
Motorists can access up-to-date travel information by dialing 511 or by visiting www.511la.org. Out-of-state travelers can call 1-888-ROAD-511 (1-888-762-3511).