The Army Corps of Engineers will keep River Road in Ama open during construction of the Western Tie-In.
The corps is scheduled to begin elevating River Road to the height of the levee on the east side of the Davis Pond Diversion in December. That work is expected to last from 45 to 60 days.
“We’ve been working closely with St. Charles Parish elected officials, the Department of Transportation and Development, the Office of Coastal Protection and Restoration, St. Charles Parish School Board, the St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Office and the Lafourche Basin Levee District to minimize the temporary traffic impacts that would be generated on River Road,” said Jeff Williams, project manager. “Our revised proposal is to construct a temporary bypass road at River Road that would be managed by St. Charles Parish sheriff’s deputies 24-hours per day for the duration of construction.”
School bus and emergency vehicle traffic will continue to travel on River Road without delay. However, local traffic can take the official detour route to Highway 90 or may continue on River Road with traffic delays on the temporary bypass road, the Corps has said. Details of the detour route and temporary bypass on LA 18 are under development.
Sheriff Greg Champagne said that he made it very clear to the Corps that closing access via River Road for several weeks was not an acceptable situation.
Champagne said that the Corps agreed and that language will be placed in the contract documents to provide funds for deputies to control traffic at the bypass location. He added that it is unclear whether there will be one or two lanes of travel.
“Certainly two lanes of travel would be the ideal situation and we are hopeful that this will be the result,” Champagne said. “If we are restricted to one lane, deputies will make sure it works.”
Champagne said that if there is only one lane, priority will be given to minimize the delay to school buses and emergency vehicles. However, Champagne said he will make sure that Ama residents will be able to “traverse the location to and from their homes without having to go miles out of their way.”