January 30, 2024

Cassidy: We Are Finally Building a New Calcasieu River Bridge

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA) released a statement after the Louisiana Legislature’s Joint Transportation Committee approved a plan to build a new I-10 bridge over the Calcasieu River in Lake Charles, Louisiana with $150 million from Cassidy’s Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA). Without approving a plan by February 1st, the state would have forfeited the IIJA funding, stalling the project indefinitely.

“Southwest Louisiana needed to replace the Calcasieu River Bridge, which is why we worked to ensure our state had the $150 million available to them to make it happen,” said Dr. Cassidy. “This was one of the projects I was thinking of when I was working on the Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill.”

The I-10 bridge is one of nine projects announced to receive money from the FY 22 MEGA Grant Awards. Louisiana received the third-highest award in the nation. Louisiana is also eligible for INFRA and RAISE grants from IIJA and MEGA grants will continue to be announced for the next three years. The new bridge will be wider, with six lanes, shoulders and center barriers, a lower approach incline, increased overhead clearance, and improved interchanges.

Congress increased funding headed to states for transportation infrastructure through IIJA. Prior to the bill being signed into law in 2021, Louisiana received about $768 million in federal highway formula dollars. Under IIJA, Louisiana has received more than $2.7 billion to invest in roads, bridges, and other major highway projects.