Perhaps the most disturbing aspect of the story that private citizens want to build a Madisonville by-pass bridge is the seeming indifference of the politicians and the Department of Transportation and Development to the current situation. They talk of solutions that are years away, with no indication of any current concrete steps that could help alleviate the problem. And the problems now are exacerbated by motorists trying to bypass Interstate 12 construction delays that will continue for several years.
Here then are some immediate steps that would lessen the problem:
1) Recalibrate the lights along La. 22 to give more precedence to La. 22 traffic. This is especially needed for the lights at the Beau Chene and Marina Beau Chene entrances, which cause traffic stalls back to the Madisonville bridge in the mornings, and similar stalls going west in the afternoon.
2) Another contributor is school traffic from Madisonville to Mandeville. The original plan of having students who live west of the Tchefuncta go to Covington schools is being ignored. That plan should be re-instituted to alleviate the problems the student traffic creates both morning and afternoon, especially since the roads through Covington have been upgraded and can better handle the traffic. Eventually a high school in Madisonville could provide a permanent solution.
3) Finally, involve the congressional delegation in discussions with the Coast Guard to change the opening times for the existing bridge.