Easier way to drive through Bossier in the works


Bossier Parish approves a way to tackle infrastructure upgrades.

20.5 million dollars will be spent to upgrade bridges, road and drainage and sewer projects throughout the parish. The Bossier Parish Police Jury finalized a deal with Regions Bank to borrow the funds. The money will be paid off through dedicated sales taxes.

“Our financial advisors are working with the bank. We’ve got a draw down schedule and we’ll be borrowing that money every quarter, every six months over the next three years and I’ll spend it as soon as we get it,” said Butch Ford, Bossier Parish engineer.

Ford said most of these projects were put on the back burner for years because of lack of revenue.

One of those projects being resurrected is the Arthur Ray Teague Parkway expansion. Ford said this important roadway will help drivers like never before. 

The process to expand Arthur Ray Teague Parkway going south started in 2010 when Bossier Parish had high revenue during from sales taxes during the Haynesville Shale heyday. But after that money ran dry, the plans had to be shelved because of revenue decline.

“We were seeing revenues in the 16 to 18 million and then they dropped back down to seven-million,” Ford said.

So when the Police Jury approved borrowing the money to pay for infrastructure upgrades throughout the parish, Arthur Ray Teague Parkway was at the top of Ford’s list. The extension will make it quicker and easier to drive one-way through Bossier and take some traffic off the main inner city roads. Big trucks will stick to Highway 71 while regular vehicles can take the parkway with few traffic lights in their way.

“It will take the people who are going north to south and south to north, they won’t be going through and stopping and starting, they’ll be using the parkway,” Ford said.

It’s also needed for public safety and emergency response vehicles in case there’s a wreck on Highway 71. 

“Several years ago there was an accident on Highway 71 south of Sligo and all of Bossier shut down. There’s no other place to go. You have to back up and go all the way to 157,” Ford said.

Ford said they’re anticipating the future corridor of Interstate 69 that will run right through Taylortown. 

“Imagine I-69 coming through and the growth that will occur because of that,” Ford said.

The important project finally comes to fruition to connect Bossier Parish like never before. 

The parish will start acquiring “right-of-way” for land to begin project next year. 

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