A bill signed last week by Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal will complete the final $160 million of financing for two segments of Interstate 49 North that will connect Shreveport to the Arkansas line.
Jindal signed HB 370, which will allow the State Bond Commission to issue $87.5 million of bonds supported by the unclaimed property fund for the final five miles of the 36-mile, four-lane highway. The state will finance additional costs with capital outlay appropriations.
Total cost of the highway from Shreveport to Doddridge, Ark., is $622 million, including federal highway grants. By 2020, the new corridor is expected to carry up to 37,000 vehicles a day.
Jindal said the highway will be a big boost to economic activity in the central United States as well as northwest Louisiana.
“Completing I-49 North from Shreveport to Kansas City will yield between $17 billion and $36 billion in economic activity for our nation over a 20-year period,” he said.