New Roads, La. – Construction on the John James Audubon Bridge has officially come to a close. The new Mississippi River crossing is the longest cable-stayed bridge in the Western Hemisphere, with a 1,583’ main span. Located in south-central Louisiana, the Audubon Bridge connects West Feliciana Parish with Pointe Coupee Parish and is the only bridge between Baton Rouge and Natchez, Mississippi. Construction on the $409 million project began in 2006 and continued when the bridge was opened in May 2011 due to high water levels closing the St. Francisville Ferry sooner than expected.
"Although the Audubon Bridge has been open to traffic for nine months, it’s with a great sense of accomplishment that we are announcing the end of construction on this beautiful structure," said Department of Transportation and Development Secretary Sherri H. LeBas, P.E. "The completion of this bridge opens economic development in south-central Louisiana and will be a source of regional, statewide, and national pride."
"The crews have done a first-class job on this bridge and its approach roadways. With a 100-year lifespan, the Audubon Bridge will open the doors for commerce and travel for generations to come," said Louisiana TIMED Program Director Stephen Spohrer, P.E.
Construction was officially completed with the installation of the navigational clearance gauges, markers which indicate the vertical distance between the waterline and the lowest point of the bridge span in the navigational channel.
The bridge project was part of the Louisiana TIMED Program and was constructed by Audubon Bridge Constructors (ABC), a joint venture of Flatiron Corporation, Granite Construction, and Parsons Transportation Group. The TIMED Program is the single largest transportation program in Louisiana history. The Program is designed to enhance economic development in Louisiana through an investment in transportation projects and is funded by a dedicated $0.04 per gallon gasoline and motor fuels tax. It was created by Act 16 of the 1989 Louisiana Legislature and was approved by a vote of the people.
The bridge gets its name from John James Audubon (1785-1851), one of the world’s most renowned naturalist artists, who dedicated his life to painting all of the birds in America. Audubon painted 32 of his famous works in his Birds of America series while residing at Oakley Plantation in St. Francisville as a tutor to Eliza Pirrie in 1821.
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).