Gov. Andy Beshear, D-Ky., and Gov. Mike DeWine, R-Ohio, announced that a new “street grid” reconnecting downtown Cincinnati to Queensgate and “reduced impacts” to Goebel Park in Covington are among seven major innovations on the way with the $3.6 billion Brent Spence Corridor Project.

What You Need To Know

  • Seven major refinements have been added to design plans for the Brent Spence Corridor Project

  • One is a "street grid" to reconnect downtown Cincinnati to Queensgate

  • Adjustments have been made based on engineering evaluations and public feedback

  • Four of the adjustments have been made on the Ohio side and three of them are on the Kentucky side

The improvements are the result of engineering evaluations and public feedback.

In a news release, Beshear said the recommended design refinements “meet or exceed the contract objectives of improving quality, reducing costs, shortening schedule, improving safety and/or supporting local communities. There were more than 100 suggestions submitted to the project team from the public, key local stakeholders and the design-build team were evaluated based on the objectives.

“These innovations are a key part of continuing the transformational changes we’re making to boost Kentucky’s economy and ensure a higher quality of life here and beyond our borders,” said Beshear. “They are a testament to the collaboration, teamwork and goals each state shares to build a better corridor while fulfilling our good neighbor pledge.”

“These thoughts and ideas will make the Brent Spence Bridge Corridor even better,” said DeWine. “These enhancements aren’t just about reducing congestion on an interstate, it’s about improving safety, reconnecting communities, and enhancing the lives of those who live, work and visit the area.”

Ohio refinements

The project team came up with four refinements for Ohio.

First, the project team will free up an additional acre for development or green space by moving southbound Interstate 75 to the western edge of the corridor. The move also allows the roadway to be constructed while minimizing disruptions to traffic on the existing southbound I-75. It brings the total area for development or green space to 11 acres.

Second, a new intersection will be added at West Night and Gest streets to reconnect the downtown Cincinnati street grid with Queensgate. It includes extending West Fifth and West Sixth streets across I-75 to Queensgate.

Third, the plans will combine the I-7th southbound ramps to 2nd and 3rd streets, which will reduce both costs and the project footprint.

Finally, the team will reconfigure the U.S. 50 lanes, improving safety and traffic flow for this critical east-west connection.

Kentucky refinements

Three improvements are planned for the project in northern Kentucky.

The first innovation lowers the profile of the interstate by as much as 30 feet between Ninth Street and the new companion bridge. This is to address visibility concerns raised by Covington residents.

Second, entrance locations to the interstate system are being adjusted to line up more like they are today near Pike Street. This addresses another concerned raised by residents about increased traffic changing the residential character of Ninth Street.

Finally, the interstate alignment through the “cut in the hill” just south of Covington will be shifted to the east. This will eliminate the need for significant excavation of the rock embankment and construction of a retaining wall.

The Brent Spence Bridge Corridor Project is designed to improve approximately five miles of Interstate 71 and 75 in Kentucky and three miles in Ohio. In development since 2005, the project will include construction of a new companion bridge immediately to the west of the existing Brent Spence Bridge.


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