Saturday, July 13, 2024

Big Changes Coming to the Town of Haughton

by BIZ Magazine

By Stacey Tinsley, Bossier Press-Tribune

In a press conference held on Monday, July 1, 2024, at the Haughton Town Hall, it was announced that the Louisiana Legislature has approved funding for the expansion of Louisiana Highway 3227 (LA 3227).

“It has been a project where you give a little and get a little. Finally, last week, we received word that HB2 and HB1, along with HB 782, the state supplemental bill, were signed,” said Haughton Mayor Kim Gaspard.

“This project will act as a catalyst for major commercial development in Haughton. It will facilitate the development of 70 acres of commercial space in our town. So what can you expect? You’ll see a major grocery store, a pharmacy, and various eateries coming to Haughton,” Gaspard added.

Phase 2 of the project includes the realignment of LA 3227 from its current intersection with LA 157. LA 3227 will be rerouted to connect with LA 157 immediately south of the Pilot Travel Stop. The traffic signal will also be relocated to this new intersection. The previous intersection of LA 157 at LA 3227 will become right-in and right-out only; crossing from the Pilot to LA 3227 will no longer be possible. To access LA 3227, drivers will need to travel south on LA 157 to the new intersection and traffic signal, then turn onto LA 3227.

“We’re excited for the town. I thank the mayor for his persistence. Governor Jeff Landry promised during his campaign to make our projects his own, and that’s exactly what he did. He embraced and supported them, which is why we’re here today celebrating. Haughton deserves this; our town has grown by 33% over the past decade. With increased capital outlay funds, we’ll be better equipped to manage this growth,” said Louisiana District 9 State Representative Dodie Horton (R-Haughton).

Phase 2 is estimated to cost around $7 million, though the final expenses will depend on design and materials. Bidding is expected to commence in early 2025, with the project slated for completion within 12 months, weather permitting.

The purpose of these projects, as highlighted by attending elected officials, is to accommodate and improve traffic flow in the area.

“What’s particularly crucial about this LA 157 at LA 3227 project is its potential to bolster the sales tax revenue essential for Haughton’s continued growth. It will also enable us to provide essential services that our residents depend on,” said Louisiana District 36 State Senator Adam Bass (R-Bossier City).

Currently, the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (LADOTD) is progressing with Phase 1 of the LA 3227 realignment project, which primarily involves widening LA 157 from two to five lanes. Phase 1 is estimated to cost $4.1 million.

House Bill 782 allocates $450,000 to the Town of Haughton. These funds will be dedicated to street and drainage improvements, as well as equipment for the fire and police departments.

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