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Officials: Brent Spence Bridge could reopen Tuesday afternoon, a day ahead of schedule

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Posted at 5:16 PM, Dec 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-21 18:57:12-05

The Brent Spence Bridge is expected to reopen as early as Tuesday afternoon, Kentucky transportation officials announced Monday.

According to a release, crews will begin the process of restoring normal traffic patterns overnight Monday and into Tuesday morning.

Details about the timing of reopening lanes and ramp closures will be announced at a press briefing set for 10 a.m. Tuesday.

The bridge, connecting Interstates 71 and 75 across the Ohio River, closed to traffic on Nov. 11 after a fiery semi crash damaged the upper and lower decks of the 57-year-old bridge. For weeks, it had been set to reopen on Wednesday, Dec. 23.

"We promised we would work hard, we promised we would work fast, but we promised that safety would be a priority," Gov. Andy Beshear said at a news briefing Monday. "It's also our hope that it comes in under budget, and that would be a heck of a job by our transportation cabinet and everybody who's working on it."

Repair crews conducted the final concrete pour on the bridge last week, with finishing work, including inspections and lane striping, set to take place early this week. On Monday afternoon, the final inspections on the bridge were completed, and inspectors confirmed that the bridge is safe for travel and for final repair work to begin.

Beginning at midnight on Monday, several lane and ramp closures will be put into place so crews can remove various traffic control devices and temporary signage, and perform additional activities to prepare for the reopening of the bridge:

  • At midnight, I-71/75 northbound will be closed to all traffic at the I-275 interchange. The single lane of travel that is currently open north of the I-275 interchange will be closed.
  • In addition, the following ramps that provide access to I-71/75 northbound will be closed:
    • The on-ramp from Buttermilk Pike
    • The on-ramp from Dixie Highway
    • The on-ramp from Kyles Lane