Some critical of delayed Government Street 'road diet' plan

The Government Street "road diet" will trim the road down from four lanes to two, plus a turn lane (Source: WAFB)
The Government Street "road diet" will trim the road down from four lanes to two, plus a turn lane (Source: WAFB)
The Government Street "road diet" will trim the road down from four lanes to two, plus a turn lane (Source: WAFB)
The Government Street "road diet" will trim the road down from four lanes to two, plus a turn lane (Source: WAFB)

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Anyone with a New Year's resolution of cutting back who is now having trouble may have more in common than they think with a major Baton Rouge roadway.

The Government Street "road diet" plan is dealing with a bit of a delay in actually gaining ground. The plan calls for trimming the four lane stretch of road between East Boulevard downtown and Lobdell to two lanes, with a turning lane in the middle. A roundabout will also be thrown in where Lobdell and Government meet and the extra space along the road will be used for sidewalk improvements to make the area more bike and people friendly.

It has been in the works since 2014 and construction was set to begin three weeks ago on Monday, January 8. The date was pushed back and now Doug Moore, president of Bike Baton Rouge, is wondering when crews will step on the gas. "I've been following it since they first announced it in 2014 and I've just been really anxious for the to get underway," said Moore.

He believes it will not only be good for bikes, but for businesses as well. "It's obviously better for business to be on a street that takes into account everyone using it," he added.

Moore is not the only one excited about the idea. "I live right over there and I have to go down this street everyday, so I think it's going to be a good thing," said Amy Scott.

While the diet is now slowly moving along, not everyone is on board with the fitness plan. "It's a bad idea because it's gonna' stir up traffic and when people are getting off, you're still going to have traffic go longer and longer," said Troy Jackson.

No matter what lane they fall in on this debate, folks on both sides agree things along Government Street will be a lot worse before they get better.

"What's going to suck is whenever the construction goes on," said Scott.

"That's frustration and frustration is going to lead into boom," Jackson added.

Construction for the road diet project is expected to last between 18 months and two years.

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