SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, Commissioner Jay Dardenne, State Representative Cedric Glover, Louisiana State Senator Robert Mills, and other members of the State’s Facilities Planning Team gathered in Shreveport for the groundbreaking of the Joe D. Waggonner Federal Building.

Neighbor to the upcoming Waggonner building, Holy Trinity Catholic Church celebrates its 150 years in downtown Shreveport. Rev. Duane C. Trombetta led invocation and blessing from Holy Trinity Catholic Church.

The groundbreaking has been a long time coming as the Waggonner building sat vacant for more than 20 years and will get a new life after the governor’s approval of the building’s purchase in 2022.

“I am excited about what this celebration means for Shreveport, for downtown Shreveport, a recommitment to the State of Louisiana, to this city, to this region by repurposing an iconic building,” said Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards.

On October 30, at 10:30 a.m. at the Northwest Louisiana State Office Building, 500 Fannin Street, state and local officials were on hand for the groundbreaking.

“This is a great day for Shreveport and particularly for downtown Shreveport,” said Shreveport’s Mayor Tom Arceneaux.

The state will utilize the concrete pads and skeletal metal structure of the building in the construction of the new state office building. Reusing the existing materials will save the state money and provide convenience by placing a state building near the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, Government Plaza, and the Caddo Parish Courthouse.

“We hope this represents a commitment on the part of the state to say to you within the private sector that if you have your office presently downtown, we want to see you stay here because we need you here to help to continue to grow, elevate and advanced downtown Shreveport and Shreveport as a whole,” said State Representative Cedric Glover.