- Associated Press - Saturday, August 16, 2014

ALEXANDRIA, La. (AP) - Truck traffic will be banned from the O.K. Allen Bridge in Rapides Parish beginning Tuesday.

Trucks will be detoured from the bridge, which carries U.S. 71 over the Red River between Alexandria and Pineville, and told to use the Purple Heart Bridge on U.S. 167, also known as the Pineville Expressway.

Murphy Ledoux, district engineer administrator for the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development, says the move is needed to enforce weight limits on the current bridge, built in 1936.

The state is spending $82.9 million to build twin two-lane bridges replacing the existing bridge, named for the late Gov. Oscar K. Allen. The department says traffic should be rerouted from the old bridge by early 2015 and both spans completed by summer 2016. The old bridge will be demolished.



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