BATON ROUGE, La (BRPROUD)- The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD) held a ribbon-cutting to celebrate the completion of the Government Street Road Diet Project.
“It really is transforming the way we interact with the traveling public,” said DOTD Secretary Shawn Wilson.
The project started in 2018, Wilson says its completion is about more than road improvement.
“It’s also about active transportation, addressing the issues of pedestrians, cyclists, individuals that need ADA accommodation,” said Wilson.
The 11.7 million dollar project reduced Government Street from four lanes to two travel lanes in each direction, creating traffic control and safer biking lanes for cyclists like Joseph Brown who said he’ll be changing his bike routes to use the road more often.
For Wilson, the completion of the road also means connecting the community through transportation and mobility.
“This is an academic corridor, it’s a tourism corridor, it’s a business corridor, it’s a restaurant corridor,” said Wilson.
The road was improved with pedestrians and cyclists in mind, Geaux Ride Owner Charles Daniel said this will invite more activity into the community.
“Baton Rouge Cycling is so disconnected, so projects such as these give bikers the opportunity not only to bike in the confines of where they currently are but reach out and expand and explore Baton Rouge,” said Daniel.
Local officials and community members took to the streets on bikes to celebrate the moment.
“I think it’s transformative, and I look forward to other bike paths being created throughout our city,” said East Baton Rouge Parish Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome.