Jonesville bridge construction continues

Published 12:00 am Friday, May 9, 2003

JONESVILLE, La.&045; Although delays continue on construction of the approaches to the new Jonesville Bridge over Black River, the bridge is scheduled to be completed in July.

&uot;The bridge is coming along fine,&uot; Jonesville Mayor Mike Wilson said.

In March, the Department Of Transportation and Development published a legal notice in local newspapers calling for public response to the rerouting of U.S. 84 at Frogmore.

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The only response the DOTD received from the public was that the new highway would not be a visual distraction to Frogmore.

DOTD is now sending the responses to the state historic preservation officer to show that visual screening is not necessary, according to Vince Russo, an environmental administrator with the department.

It is estimated to be about 90 days before the bureaucratic process of reviewing the environmental issue of U.S. 84 at Frogmore is completed, according to Wilson.

After the process is complete, the purchase of the right-of-way access property on both sides of the river will begin.

The rerouting of U.S. 84 was conceived to eliminate the present curve at Frogmore.

Due to Piazza Cotton Gin being registered with the National Historic Registry and on the property of Frogmore it is guaranteed certain rights.

Environmentalist became involved with the situation to determine if the highway would be a visual distraction to people visiting the museum.

Wilson is anxious for the four-laning of U.S. 84 to begin for economic reasons.

&uot;My main push is for the four-lane highway, Wilson said about U.S. 84.

The current Jonesville Bridge was built in the 1930s and dirt taken from Indian mounds was used for the embankments to the bridge.

Jonesville was originally the village of the Troyville Indians, where a number of Indian mounds were present.

In order to preserve any historic material, an archeologist will be present when the current bridge is taken down.