NEW ORLEANS, La. – In an effort to lessen the impact during the holiday season, the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD) announced today that it will begin repairs to the Judge Seeber Bridge, also known as the Claiborne Bridge, starting in spring 2011.
The newly revised work schedule was a collaborative effort between the DOTD, the United States Coast Guard (USCG), local officials, the community and contractor, Boh Bros. It will require a seven week closure and will begin in early April. The work is projected to be completed prior to the beginning of hurricane season, which is June 1, 2011.
"I am pleased that the state DOTD has worked diligently with our citizens, the Coast Guard and others to develop a new construction schedule that will lessen the impact to the daily routine of area residents during the holiday season," said Rep. Nita Hutter (Chalmette), who chairs the House Transportation, Highways and Public Works Committee.
Work performed will involve replacing the steel grid deck, replacing the steel beams that support the grid deck and other items that can be done at the same time. Prior to spring, closures of the bridge to both navigational and vehicular traffic will be necessary for 2-3 day periods to allow for the adjustment and re-tensioning of the bridge lifting cables that were installed under the previous phase of the project. Final dates for these closures have not been determined; however, the desired timeframe is the first part of the new year. Public meetings will be held to update the community prior to announcing any closures. Currently, the DOTD is working out details with the USCG to accommodate and minimize impacts to the navigation industry.
"The overall objective was to come up with a schedule that was in the best interest of the citizens that utilize the Claiborne Bridge the most – those in the Lower Ninth Ward and portions of St. Bernard Parish," said Michael Stack, DOTD District 02 Administrator. "The revised plan allows us to deliver the best project with the least amount of impact."
Rep. Charmaine Marchand-Stiaes believes that the much-needed repairs to the bridge, which is a primary thoroughfare for the majority of her constituents, will help improve the quality of life for area commuters and stated, "This is the right thing to do for the community."
The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD) is committed to delivering transportation and public works systems that enhance the quality of life. In addition to more than 16,600 miles of roadway, including over 890 miles of interstate, DOTD supports the development of the state’s aviation, marine and rail infrastructures. Through this work, we are able to facilitate economic development, create job opportunities, improve vital evacuation routes, and make critical freight corridors safer and more efficient.
For more information, please visit www.dotd.la.gov, email email@example.com, or call DOTD’s 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).