Bridge lights pilot program working well so far

By By John Guidroz / American Press

The lights that were installed on the Interstate 10 bridge last month have improved visibility and have withstood the vibrations

caused by traffic, according to one Calcasieu Parish official.

“I drive (the bridge) every morning, and they are working well so far,” Parish Engineer Tim Conner said Monday.

Conner said the project is a three-month pilot program to see if the new LED lights will work.

He said five overhead lights were installed at the top of the bridge, along with three “wall packs,” which are light fixtures

on the bridge’s structure.

The lights will be evaluated after two months before any additional lights are installed, Conner said. The reevaluation must

be approved by the state Department of Transportation and Development.

Conner said it would cost an estimated

$449,898 to light the entire bridge. He said the city of Westlake would

contribute

$30,000, and that the state has committed just over $92,000 in

federal money. The City of Lake Charles and the parish would

split the remaining $327,500.

Conner also had an update on another project — replacing the Miller Avenue Bridge in Westlake.

He said crews should begin working this week to replace the Miller Avenue Bridge in Westlake, a project that was delayed for

about a month.

He said the project was delayed because the contractor — Cecil D. Gassiott LLC — was finishing a project in Baton Rouge related

to Hurricane Isaac.

Conner said Miller Avenue will be closed for about six months while the bridge is replaced. The original bridge was built

in 1960.

The project is being paid for with federal funds as part of the state DOTD’s Off-System Bridge Program. He said it has an

estimated cost of $1.5 million.