Dig Baton Rouge

Report: Government Street ‘diet’ starting in January

Work to reduce Government Street through Downtown and Mid City to three lanes and beautify it will start after the holidays, according to a new report.

The Advocate said city-parish officials set a Jan. 8 start date for work on the “road diet”, which would take Government down from four lanes to two travel lanes with a center turning lane while adding bike lanes and sidewalks.

The change will stretch from I-110 and Government downtown all the way to Lobdell, with one stretch between North Foster and Jefferson staying at four lanes. A roundabout will also be added at Government and Lobdell.

The Advocate says there are concerns traffic is too heavy for a thinner roadway, and that switching back and forth from three to four lanes could cause trouble. The stretch remaining four lanes sees above 25,000 vehicles a day on average, according to state and local traffic numbers, and federal guidelines recommend going wider than three lanes once traffic goes above 20,000.

The work is expected to last well into 2019 before it is completed, according to city-parish officials.

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