DOTD looks to alleviate traffic on 4-H Club Road

DENHAM SPRINGS, LA (WAFB) - There's too much traffic on 4-H Club Road in Denham Springs.  Plans had called for a roundabout on the road, but DOTD has another plan to keep traffic moving.

If you were stuck in it, you haven't forgotten.  When an 18-wheeler took a spill a few months ago, drivers were detoured down 4-H Club Road to get to Highway 190, where things were at a standstill.

"People would get on 190, back up the traffic.  And it would take me sometimes as much as half an hour to get to work," said Randy Fontenot.

Fontenot owns a nearby business.  He says since the additional lane on I-12 opened, traffic is flowing more smoothly on the side streets too.

But the intersection of 4-H Club and Rushing Road has a problem with people turning.

Local drivers use it as a cut-through to get to Florida Blvd.  One councilwoman describes it as a parking lot during the evening rush hour.

DOTD Spokeswoman Jodi Conachen says they were asked by the Denham Springs mayor to take a look at how to improve traffic flow in the area.

"We're adding some turn lanes and shoulders as well," said Conachen.

After looking at traffic counts, the department decided to add turn lanes - a left turn lane on 4-H Club to Rushing and a right turn lane onto 4-H.

That should help with the delays and backups.

"There is a demand on Florida for that bypass traffic if there's an incident on interstate," said Conachen.  "So any improvements to make sure it moves as efficiently as possible is what we're trying to achieve."

For residents like Fontenot, anything that keeps the traffic rolling works.

"Growing pains, but I think that's good," said Fontenot.

Construction on 4-H Club Road is set to begin in 2013.  DOTD is paying for the project with its Safety Improvement funds.

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