BATON ROUGE - Today, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced that the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD) received $40 million in additional federal highway funding due to successfully obligating the full amount of its federal funding during the 2016-2017 federal fiscal year. The money will be used to address the I-10 improvements from I-49 to the Atchafalaya Basin Bridge in the Lafayette and St. Martin parishes. With the additional $40 million allocated, the governor’s FASTLANE grant application has been awarded a total of $100 million in federal highway funding for infrastructure projects along I-10.
“Addressing the needs of the I-10 corridor is a top infrastructure priority for me and the state,” said Gov. Edwards. “This additional funding will help DOTD move forward with this project as originally envisioned and remove all funding concerns for improvements to the entrance of Barksdale Air Force Base. This is yet another example of what we can deliver for our state if given additional dollars to invest in infrastructure.”
In April, Gov. Edwards formally submitted the application for funding on behalf of the state. Gov. Edwards and Sec. Wilson began working on the application during the governor's transition last year as a part of his overall policy agenda. In July, Louisiana received $60 million from a U.S. Department of Transportation FASTLANE grant to address improvements on the state's leading freight corridor, I-10. The state had applied for $100 million for this project. This $40 million will allow the state to fully address the I-10 improvement project using federal funds.
Each year, the United States Department of Transportation redistributes federal funding to states that are successful in obligating their full federal highway funding allotment during the fiscal year, which spans from October 1 through September 30. DOTD has obligated all of its federal funding 14 years in a row.
"This announcement is good news for the state,” Wilson said. “The I-10 corridor is vital for national commerce and for the everyday travelers who use the intestate system of the state. Much like the FASTLANE grant, this grant will free up money for improving access into Barksdale Air Force Base in Bossier City."