Calling it “huge” for Kenner, Mayor Mike Yenni on Thursday joined other city, parish and state leaders in cutting the ribbon on millions of dollars of road repairs.
The work on north Kenner streets was part of the Paths to Progress road-construction project, which was announced last spring. The state dedicated more than $90 million in transportation improvement funds to improve 60 roadway segments in Orleans and Jefferson parishes.
The road work that was formally completed on Thursday in Kenner includes repairs to damaged concrete panels that were resurfaced with a new asphalt overlay. It cost about $4.6 million.
More than 16 projects are taking place in the city at a cost of about $26 million, with work that includes curb repairs and new wheelchair-accessible ramps.
Work was done on Vintage Drive from Loyola Drive to the Duncan Canal and on Loyola Drive from West Esplanade Avenue to Vintage Drive.
The Paths to Progress work aims to repair major roads damaged during Hurricanes Katrina and Rita and that were used to haul debris.
Improvements to street segments on Sal Lentini Parkway, Chateau Boulevard and Joe Yenni Boulevard should near completion next month.
Yenni said the provided money was key for the city because it could not afford the large-scale repairs that were necessary.
“This is huge for the city of Kenner,” Yenni said.
City Councilman Kent Denapolis, in whose district most of the road work was done, said many residents questioned why the work was necessary since the roads did not appear to be too badly damaged by the storm.
But, he said, the influx of trucks onto the streets as 3,000 homeowners repaired their houses after the 2005 storms tore up the roads.
“These roads really took a lot of abuse,” Denapolis said. “Katrina shortened their lifespan.”