BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Officials broke ground on Tuesday for the new “Dijon Extension,” a road that will eventually connect Essen Lane and Bluebonnet Boulevard.
Officials say the area is highly congested because of the city’s health district, so they hope this road will alleviate the traffic.
“This will be one more road that will give another way for all of those folks to get in and out of the health district area whether they want to go to Bluebonnet, or Essen, they’ll be able to do that,” said Suzy Sonnier, the Executive Director for the Baton Rouge Health District.
Construction has two phases. In phase one, the roadway will start at Essen, run along Ward’s Creek, and end just beyond the new freestanding Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital.
That phase is expected to be finished by Fall 2019.
After that, construction begins on Phase 2, which will extend the road to Bluebonnet.
The road will have four lanes and a pathway for cyclists and pedestrians.
“Infrastructure is more than just moving vehicles,” said Dr. Shawn Wilson, Secretary for the Department of Transportation and Development.
“It’s really about mobility and connectivity for folks who are pedestrians, who are cyclists, who are riding in cars. So we’re excited to see this project come to a reality.”
Phase one costs around $8.3 million, according to Wilson. The project is being paid for federal funds and dollars from nearby hospitals.