Several groups, businesses and community leaders gathered at the LITE Center for the I-49 South Stakeholders Meeting. Local and state officials gave the latest information on the project and its funding.
“I-49 North and South is the single most important infrastructure project in the state of Louisiana. It's not to say that we don't have very important ones but this is the most important, in my opinion” says State Treasurer, John Kennedy.
Mike Michot, of The Picard Group says, “I 49 south is a vital corridor for economic development, hurricane evacuation safety, it's going to be a relief valve for I 10 between Lafayette and Baton Rouge. There's a number of positive reasons why this project needs to be completed.”
The completion of Interstate 49 would effect an economy much larger than that of solely Louisiana's. Kam Movassaghi of Fenstermaker & Associates tells News Ten It's an important Highway, it has a international significance, it has an international as well as a statewide significance.
So it's a project that we need to pay attention to try and get it done. As of now, as of now, finances are hindering the complete expansion, but State Treasurer Kennedy says, “It looks like we are going to send the last fiscal year with a surplus but we don't know for sure yet, we're closing the books. But it looks like it's going to be about 140 and 180 million. So we can't use it for higher education I would strongly recommend that we use all of our portion of that 140 to 180 million for I-49.”