SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) — “Let folks see a better Shreveport when they’re coming to town,” City engineer at Public Works, Patrick Furlong said.

The public came forth to voice their ideas on streets and drainage projects to the Shreveport Capital Improvements Committee (SCIC) in the mayor’s conference room on Thursday.

Furlong said Hollywood to I-20 would be a beautification project as it is the first thing visitors see when they arrive in Shreveport.

“Sort of a pavement index where red’s not good and green real good, and there’s lots more red than there is green,” acknowledged a member of the committee at the head of the conference table.

These proposed projects affect past and present streets and drainage issues like the Linwood Bridge which has been closed since June of 2022. Officials said there were several critical deficiencies found upon inspection. The bridge remains closed to this day.

Furlong addressed the conference room and said, they selected a group of bridges based on annual inspections that need, “work, rehab, or replacement.”

The replacement of Linwood Bridge is roughly $40 million which was followed by audible gasps.

Furlong says the city has already allocated some funds to begin planning for the bridge, “to address the worst parts of the bridge and get it opened back up.”

Secretary at Caddo Parish Public Schools, Jon Glover said, “I want to say 70th street, Herne Avenue – that street has been in disrepair for quite some time. And I know you’ve heard a lot of complaints about it, from inalignment and everything else. That street should definitely be one of the ones that should go on the list to be addressed.”

Chairman of SCIC Larry Clark said, if you have a concern about Herne, the city does not do state highways and told Glover to address her concerns to DOTD

Glover, “I believe it’s Line on back too, before you get to Herne that street is pathetic too but it was said that it was not repaired because of the waterlines that run under the street.”

A former citizen committee member said, ‘If you all follow the five-year capital improvements plan as closely as you can on streets, drains, and bridges, you will be well served. That probably applies to water, sewerage parks, and other areas.”

He ends by sharing his appreciation towards the committee for listening to the public.

Other future projects discussed brought forth by Furlong:

  • Medical corridor improvement on Kings Highway from I-49 to Herne – both were part of a $22 million grant pre-covid budget, however, he said the project fell through due to inflation. This includes bike lanes, overground utilities underground, and a potential pedestrian bridge from LSU Medical Center.
  • Furlong’s second project is to improve the fairgrounds to redevelop the area.

Shreveport Mayor Tom Arceneaux sat quietly in attendance.