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Update on Juban Road construction work, utility relocation continues

2 months 3 weeks 2 days ago Thursday, January 18 2024 Jan 18, 2024 January 18, 2024 5:52 PM January 18, 2024 in News
Source: WBRZ

DENHAM SPRINGS - It's a project that seems the be taking forever. People living in Denham Springs are curious to find out when the Juban Road widening project will be finished.

Keith Holbert moved to the area of 190 and Juban Road about four years ago. He's been living and driving through the construction ever since. The Juban Road widening project has been in the works since 2015. Construction crews broke ground in 2019, paving the way for utility relocation and it seems like it's taking forever to get done.

"It just, it gets old," said Holbert.

The plan is to widen Juban Road to four 12-foot-wide travel lanes with a five-foot raised median. There will be 10-foot-wide bicycle and pedestrian path and three roundabouts. Holbert says the journey to get to the actual road construction has been slow.

"All they do is move barricades around," said Holbert.

As work progresses along Juban Road, lanes of travel have shifted. Holbert describes fresh curves in the road as "experiences" that surprise drivers at night.

"You have to pay attention," he said.

Juban Road is an aging road that's showing and causing wear and tear on cars. Potholes are filled in with patchwork and drivers continue to dodge the bad areas.

In 2021, the Investigative Unit found the costs were adding up when it came time to move utility poles. Years later, crews are still working on utilities. WBRZ reported in July 2023 that DOTD anticipates utility relocation to "wrap up soon." Six months later DOTD says it's still working to relocate utilities.

By consolidating the two phase project to one in 2022, the state said they'd be saving money and time. The consolidation would save about $5 million and a year of work. Still, Holbert says he doesn't see much construction activity in the area.

"Whenever you see them there's two or three people and they'll be up on Juban moving gravel around, as far as actually working on the street other than moving barricades around they're not doing anything on the streets," he said.

DOTD says Juban Road and the roundabouts will be totally finished in mid-2025, weather permitting. The latest update says crews are working on drainage. The multi-barrel box culvert on 190, near Eden Church Road was replaced and traffic was realigned over the center of the box. The contractor dug an outflow canal coming from Juban directly across from Orchard Drive. That canal is over 1,000 feet long. Most of the drainage pipe and catch basins have been installed along Juban Road and 190. Soil stabilization should start by March if weather permits.

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