​Acadiana Planning Commission

  • The Acadiana Planning Commission is organized to plan the future of

            the Louisiana Parishes of Acadia, Evangeline, Iberia, Lafayette, St. Landry, St. Martin,

            and Vermilion.

  • DOTD Partner on construction project


Context Sensitive Solutions (CSS)

  • Led by DOTD
  • Context sensitive solutions (CSS) is a collaborative, interdisciplinary approach that involves all key stakeholders in the planning and design of a transportation facility that fulfills its purpose while complementing and enhancing its setting. It is an approach that leads to preserving and enhancing scenic, aesthetic, historic, community, and environmental resources, while maintaining or improving mobility, capacity and safety. CSS involves all stakeholders, including community members, interest groups, elected ocials, and aected local, state, and federal agencies. It puts project needs and both agency and community values on a level playing field and considers all trade-os in the decision-making process. 


CSS Committee Structure

  • Community Working Group: To provide community input and recommendations on the 13 Design Feature Areas and 55 Design Elements of the I-49 Lafayette Connector
    • ​Reports to Technical Advisory Committee
    • Made up of about 48 community leaders, selected by the DOTD.
  • Technical Advisory Committee: To provide technical review, comment and recommendations on the 13 Design Feature Areas and 55 Design Elements of the I-49 Lafayette Connector
    • Reports to Executive Committee
    • Members not published
  • Executive Committee: To review all recommendations from the Community Work Group and Technical Advisory Committee and make final decisions on the 13 Design Feature Areas and 55 Design Elements of the I-49 Lafayette Connector to be included in the CSS Design Standards Manual
    • ​​Final decision makers
    • Members not published


Corridor Preservation and Management Action Plan to Preserve the I-49 Alignment (I-49 Action Plan)

  • ​The Corridor Preservation and Management Action Plan to Preserve I-49, as its name suggests, seeks to preserve a transportation corridor and then manage that corridor through a series of actions.
  • These actions are shared between local government (Lafayette Consolidated Government), the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (La DOTD), and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). The necessity of the Plan is based on the Interstate’s proposed route which traverse through much of the oldest part of the City of Lafayette, Louisiana.
  • The Plan is composed of main 12 components which taken together constitute the Action Plan.


Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD)

  • Louisiana ​Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD)
  • DOTD along with federal, state, regional and local partners, recently began this phase of the I‑49 Lafayette Connector project. Beginning in October 2015 and over the following 18 months, the public and various government, business and community stakeholders will be invited to participate in a collaborative decision-making process to complete the planning and conceptual design for the I-49 Lafayette Connector, called Context-Sensitive Solutions (CSS).


Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)

  • As early as the 1960s, Evangeline Thruway was identified as a potential future interstate. But it wasn't until the 1990s that state and federal highway officials started work on an environmental impact study. 
  • A draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) with six possible routes for the I-49 Connector was revealed, but due to public input, highway officials withdrew the plan and shut it down.
  • The Lafayette Areawide Planning Commission and a design team of private and public sector professionals published in September 1993 the North/South Corridor Study, "Path to Progress," that evaluated four potential routes for the interstate.
  • In December 1997, the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development restarted the project and published a Draft EIS in November 2000.
  • ​The Lafayette City-Parish Council in February 2001 selected the RR-4 route, the one still under consideration, and the Final EIS was published in August 2002. A Record of Decision giving the go-ahead to the project was issued in January 2003.
  • In 2004, a citizens coalition filed a federal lawsuit to halt the project based on issues like the impact to the environment and historic properties. They lost. Planning began but was put on hold again from 2008 until 2015. 


Evangeline Thruway Redevelopment Team (ETRT)

  • Created in 2002 by ordinance, adopting the Corridor Preservation and Management Action Plan to Preserve the I-49 Alignment (Action Plan) as a policy body to implement the Action Plan. 
  • Renamed in 2016 as the Evangeline Corridor Initiative (ECI) for its role on the Lafayette Connector Project. 
  • Oversees TIGER Grant
  • Reports to LCG 


Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)

  • Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)
  • DOTD Partner on construction project​​
  • Funded TIGER Grant (with a match from LCG)


Lafayette Consolidated Government (LCG)

  • Received TiGER Grant from FHWA and provided match.
  • Overseeing TIGER Grant Projects
  • Oversees ETRT


Lafayette North-South Corridor Study: “Path to Progress.”

  • ​Produced by the Greater Lafayette Chamber of Commerce in 1993.
  • This report sought to establish a need for an interstate and prompted the interest in upgrading US Highway 90 to interstate standards after concerns from the public halted progress since 1990. 


​Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) 

  • Lafayette Metropolitan Planning Organization
  • The Lafayette Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) is the transportation planning agency for the Lafayette Urbanized Area, the geography as defined by the US Census and illustrated by the "Lafayette Metropolitan Planning Area" map. The Lafayette MPO consists of representatives from local governments and transportation authorities. The main function of the MPO is the oversight of short and long-range transportation plans, the coordination of federal, state and local transportation programs and projects, and the allocation of federal, state and local funds for transportation projects and programs.


UL Community Design Workshop Report (Blue Book)

  • ​The UL-Lafayette School of Architecture (Community Design Workshop), LCG, MPO and Neighborhood Pride put together a report of plans providing the MPO with standards to uphold to the DOTD regarding the design and anticipated construction of the I-49 Connector. 


Record of Decision (ROD)

  • ​The Record of Decision (ROD) approved the Selected Alternative Route (RR-4 Elevated) for the I-49 Connector from just south of the Lafayette Regional Airport north to the current southern terminus of Interstate 49 at the Interstate 10/Interstate 49 interchange, as described in the Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) issued September 2002.
  • The Final EIS studied the proposed construction of a six-lane fully controlled access freeway, approximately five miles in length, generally along the existing U.S. 90/U.S. 167 corridor (Evangeline Thruway) in urban Lafayette.
  • Following the approval of this ROD, the project will then be able to begin provisions to preserve the I-49 Alignment through use of the LCG Corridor Preservation and Management Action Plan and as funding becomes available, design and construction will be implemented.


TIGER Grant

  • ​The U.S. Department of Transportation awarded Lafayette Consolidated Government (LCG) $304,250 in September, 2014. LCG contributed a local partial match of $195,750 to bring the total to $500,000 for neighborhood planning in five districts in the I-49 Corridor.
  • While DOTD officials design the $1 billion I-49 Connector - a 5.5 mile, six-lane elevated Interstate that will pass through the declining urban core of Lafayette - LCG, through the TIGER grant, will plan for the necessary improvements in the corridor. ​
  • LCG is currently assembling a team to oversee this project. 
  • Reports to ETRT


Document Library

​1968: Evangeline Thruway identified for possible upgrading to interstate standards.


1990: Federal Highway Administration and Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development begin location study and Environmental Impact Study of U.S. 90/Evangeline Thruway.

1992: Draft Environmental Impact Statement completed; 200 people oppose I-49 project at public hearing; DOTD ends further work.

1993: Greater Lafayette Chamber of Commerce convenes task force to increase interest in and to further study a north-south corridor through Lafayette. With Lafayette government leaders, the Lafayette North/South Corridor Study, "Path to Progress," is completed in September offering four possible north-south routes.

1997: EIS restarted.

2000: Draft EIS published in November.

2001: Lafayette City-Parish Council in February endorses the RR-4 alignment for the I-49 Lafayette Connector.

2002: Final EIS published in August.

2003: Record of Decision issued in January with 21 commitment and mitigation items. Notes receipt of a petition with 2,000 signatures opposing interstate through the city.

2004: Concerned Citizens Coalition sues Federal Highway Administration in federal court to stop construction of elevated interstate through Lafayette. The FHWA wins.

2006-2008: Functional planning begins, interpreting EIS to create engineering drawings.

2008: Project is halted.

2015: Functional planning restarted in October.       

​Provided by The Daily Advertiser

 ​DOTD

     See plan

  •  ​DOTD
  • FHWA
  • Acadiana Planning Commission
  • Contractors: Stantec / AECOM

Evangeline Corridor Initiative (TIGER Grant)

 See plan

  • LCG
  • ETRT
  • FHWA

How do they fit together?

While DOTD officials design the $1 billion I-49 Connector - a 5.5 mile, six-lane elevated Interstate that will pass through urban core of Lafayette - LCG, through the TIGER grant, will plan for the necessary improvements in the corridor. 

Glossary

Read documents listed in the glossary by clicking the links in the document library at the top, right of this page.

​​​I-49

Lafayette

Timeline

Who is involved?

Maps