Funds for new bridges included in 2010-16 state highway plan
by Franklin Clark, Reporter -- fclark@cadizrecord.com
Feb 10, 2010 | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear’s recommended Kentucky Highway Plan for the fiscal years 2010–16, which was presented to the General Assembly last week, includes $330 million for new bridges across Lake Barkley and Kentucky Lake.

Beshear’s plan also includes money for the widening of more than 4 miles of U.S. 68/80 on the eastern side of Lake Barkley, as well as money for a replacement of the bridge across Ky. 1585.

The $11 billion plan is based on a combination of federal and state highway funds and bond sales and identifies projects that would be eligible for federal stimulus funding, said Keith Todd, public information officer for the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet.

‘This plan lays a strategic path to ensure that Kentucky’s most pressing highway improvement projects are realized,” Beshear said. “The national economy has depressed traditional funding for roads, but we cannot afford to abandon our Commonwealth’s infrastructure priorities.”

The new four-lane bridges along Highway 68/80 would replace the current two-lane bridges that were first built in 1932, and would be built near the current bridges’ locations at Aurora and Canton.

By 2011, construction is set to begin, Project Manager Tim Shoate said at a public hearing that was held at the Lake Barkley Convention Center at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 20, 2008.

Each bridge will cost about $178 million, Beshear announced to a packed room at a press conference at 9 a.m. Tuesday at Lake Barkley State Resort Park and Lodge Tuesday, July 14 last year.

The two replacement bridges are part of the US Highway 68 corridor reconstruction project, which is slated to be completed by late 2017, said Chuck Wolfe of the Governor’s Office.

The twin basket handle, tied-arch 550-foot, four-lane spans will include 11-foot lanes, four-foot shoulders and an eight-foot sidewalk and bike path, Wolfe said.

The rest of the plan can be seen at http://transportation.ky.gov/progmgmt/2010highwayplan.html.

(Keith Todd of the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet contributed to this story.)
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