LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) – Motorists who use I-10 and I-49 in Lafayette will see some disruption of their commute for a while starting later this month.

The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development has announced its plans to repair the I-10 eastbound overpass at I-49 in Lafayette, which was damaged in a crash on Jan. 3.

The impact to the overpass resulted in catastrophic damage to three out of eight girders on the eastbound bridge deck, authorities said. Repairs will take place in two phases.

The first phase of work is estimated to take place Jan. 20-22. At times, both phases will require a full closure of I-10 eastbound and I-49 northbound at the overpass to complete the necessary work, DOTD Secretary Shawn D. Wilson said.

“After extensive planning with our consultant team, we have determined the best course of action to repair the I-10 overpass,” Wilson said. “Our optimal goal is safety. With this action plan, not only will we be able to ensure the safety of the traveling public, but we are also able address the repairs expediently without extended interruption to traffic.”

Details regarding traffic detours will be sent prior to the closure.

The initial phase of the project includes removing the damaged section of the I-10 overpass structure.

The new girders and bridge deck will be fabricated at an off-site location. This process is estimated to be completed in a few months, officials said.

While the new bridge components are being prepared, existing concrete barriers will be shifted to allow two lanes of traffic to operate on I-10 eastbound. Under this temporary configuration, eastbound traffic will travel on two 11-foot lanes with a 1-foot shoulder.

During this time, the following closures will remain in place.

  • Interstate 10 eastbound overpass auxiliary lane (deceleration/acceleration lane)
  • Inside lane of Interstate 49 northbound
  • I-49 northbound exit ramp from I-10 (Exit 103B)
  • I-10 eastbound on-ramp from I-49 (Exit 1A)

Phase two of the project includes the final removal of necessary bridge components and installing the newly constructed girders and bridge deck. Once the last girder is removed, crews will lift the new girders and bridge deck piece into place. After all pieces are securely in place, a concrete closure pour will be performed to tie-in all new components to the existing bridge overpass.

The emergency contractors for this project are Lafayette-based Huval & Associates, Inc. (design) and C.E.C., Inc. (construction).

Travelers can find information regarding road closures and traffic by visiting www.511la.org or by dialing 511.