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Plans to Construct New Brent Spence Bridge Cross Major Hurdle
Feds Issue “Finding of No Significant Impact”
Lebanon, OH (Tuesday, Aug. 14, 2012) – The Brent Spence Bridge Replacement/Rehabilitation Project, which will include construction of a separate bridge for Interstate 75 between Cincinnati and Covington, Ky., takes a major step forward with the Federal Highway Administration’s (FHWA) approval of the proposed alternative for the $2.7 billion project.
FWHA’s action to issue the “Finding of No Significant Impact” document means an exhaustive Environmental Impact Statement is not needed for the project’s recommended alternative, which in addition to a new bridge, will involve rehabilitation of nearly eight miles of the heavily traveled and strategically critical I-75 corridor.
FHWA’s stamp of approval permits Ohio and Kentucky to move forward with final design while working diligently to secure needed funding for right of way acquisition, utilities and construction.
“As a major north-south transportation corridor and one of the busiest trucking routes in the nation, the Brent Spence/I-75 corridor is an important link for local, regional and national economies,” said Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) Director Jerry Wray. “As such, Federal Highway’s issuance of this document ensures that development of this key transportation corridor continues unabated.”
The I-75/Brent Spence improvement project is designed to improve traffic flow and level of service, improve safety, correct geometric deficiencies and maintain connections to key regional and national transportation corridors.
“Federal approval of the environmental document allows this important and complex project to move into final design,” said Kentucky Transportation Secretary Mike Hancock. “Much work lies ahead, but the project is progressing.”
The Brent Spence Bridge, which opened to traffic in 1963, was designed to carry 80,000 vehicles per day.  It currently carries 160,000 vehicles per day, on both I-71 and I-75. Traffic volumes are projected to increase to approximately 233,000 vehicles per day in 2035.
The Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) is based on the Environmental Assessment (EA) approved by FHWA on March 7, 2012 along with subsequent comments and responses on the EA and supporting technical studies. The final EA/FONSI were prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act and are available online at:  http://www.brentspencebridgecorridor.com/.