By Bonnie Culverhouse
Turning a driveway into a service road may sound difficult, but the Webster Parish Police Jury and Department of Transportation and Development are working together to make it happen.
Called “Frontage Road” now, the property is assessed to the State of Louisiana Department of Highways.
With a handful of businesses on it, the property is “a residual from the original construction of I-20,” said DOTD’s David North. “It’s wrapped up in the history of road construction in Louisiana that goes back to the 1960s.”
“It’s in bad, bad shape,” District 1 police juror Bruce Blanton said. “It probably hasn’t been touched since the Interstate was built.”
In November, North told jurors about a road transfer program that would allow the state to fix the chosen road and then hand it over to the police jury with funds for upkeep.
“It’s anticipated that this road will be out of the road transfer program,” North said. “We’re moving along with it and still working with the jury to finalize the cooperative agreement.”
Until that happens, North said nothing is definitive concerning the specifications, cost or time frame.
“We don’t know yet what would be the extent as far as the road itself,” North said. “It may be simple, and there may be complications come up with it.”
Blanton said he and other jurors feel Frontage Road is a prime place.
“This is a good deal,” Blanton said. “We want to do anything we can to help out those businesses and bring more in – especially when that new interchange to Barksdale is finished. It will make it more feasible for people to live and work in this area, and we expect them to move toward Minden.”
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