City Grill

John BasilicaJohn Basilica
Gulf Coast District Leader and Vice President

The statewide projections for job growth in the state of Louisiana is 1.2% in 2020 and 1.4% in 2021, with Lake Charles leading the pack, Basilica says. Projections are putting job growth in Lake Charles around 2.5% in 2020 and 3.1% in 2021, “which is almost double what the rest of the state is experiencing,” he says. That growth is being driven by industrial expansion, construction and investment in the oil and gas business, Basilica says.

“All that does is accentuate the need for the infrastructure—the transportation infrastructure in particular—to keep up with that growth. And it’s not,” Basilica says. “The number one capstone signature project is a new I-10 Calcasieu River Bridge.” The Chamber Southwest Louisiana established an I-10 bridge task force that determined in January that a public private partnership was the only way the bridge replacement project could be completed in a “reasonable” time frame. “Getting that project ready and having the funding in order to build that bridge is probably and will remain the number one project,” Basilica says.