Oliver spoke to the Kiwanians about road projects in Vermilion Parish and one popular subject was the overlay of Hwy. 167.
The project was supposed to start last year but it has been pushed back.
Oliver, who is DOTD’s area engineer for Vermilion Parish, educated the Kiwanians as to why it has taken so long for Hwy. 167 to be overlaid.
Bottom line for the delay? The contractor, Diamond B Construction out of Alexandria, is behind on three road projects in Acadiana.
The resurfacing of Hwy. 167 is the third project on Diamond B’s list.
“It will be resurfaced, I can not tell you when,” said Oliver. “He (contractor) is chasing projects.”
Oliver said it would delay the projects even more if the state fires Diamond B.
When the contractor does get to the resurfacing Hwy. 167, all four lanes will be redone.
Oliver said at the intersection of Hwy. 699 and Hwy. 167, there has been talk about putting a red light for safety reasons. Oliver said DOTD is looking into putting a round-about at the intersection before a red light.
He explained why La. 82 south of Abbeville is resurfaced before other roads in the parish - like north. La 82, which some said is the worst road in the parish.
La. 82, he explained, was resurfaced because it was a federal funded project that fell under “Emergency Repair Projects” selected by engineers from the federal government. He admitted it was not the worst road in the parish, but DOTD had no say in what the federal government wanted to resurface.
Abbeville Mayor Mark Piazza enquired about the downtown bridge in Abbeville and if it will be closed anytime soon. Oliver said when the barriers arrive in two weeks, it will take state workers half a morning to install them.
Oliver explained the bridge in Milton has taken longer than expected because more electrical work needed to be done than anticipated.