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LOUISVILLE, Kentucky (WDRB) — The Sherman-Minton Bridge project is on schedule to have traffic flowing smoothly in both directions by late spring.

In a press release on Tuesday, the Sherman-Minton renovation said the schedule would be updated when phase four begins, which will shift westbound traffic to the upper deck and eastbound traffic to the lower deck.

Organizers said the additional work will continue into late summer, with traffic impacts expected to be limited and most restrictions lifted by June 2024.

Danny Corbin, project manager for the Indiana Department of Transportation, said in a statement that the community’s patience was appreciated.

“The public made it clear early on that they preferred a longer construction schedule with more access over a complete closure,” Corbin said. “Even with the revised schedule, we will maintain access to the bridge during most of the construction and continue work in the safest manner possible for motorists and workers.”

According to INDOT, material and labor shortages have hampered progress on major construction projects across the region over the past two years. The time it took to manufacture key components and deliver them to the construction site has more than quadrupled, putting strain on the project schedule.

Royce Meredith, project manager for the Kentucky Department of Transportation, said in the press release that crews worked overtime to make up for the delays.

KYTC and INDOT have worked with bridge contractor Kokosing Construction Company to improve project schedule expectations. Under a modified agreement, the bridge will continue to remain open 95% of the time. The public will continue to be notified in advance of planned restrictions.

Work on phase four began in mid-November and includes structural steel repair and replacement, bridge painting, pavement maintenance and concrete bridge deck replacement on the final section of the upper westbound deck. Traffic will remain limited to one westbound lane on the upper deck. The lower deck will have one westbound lane and two eastbound lanes open.

The eastbound lanes of Interstate 64 from New Albany to Louisville have been closed since December 8 for demolition and removal of the upper deck, with reopening scheduled for December 20, 2023.

During the closure, the ramp to eastbound I-64 from West Spring Street and the ramp from eastbound I-64 to eastbound Interstate 264 will be closed.

While the road is closed to the east, Interstate 265 to 65 is proposed as an alternative route. Regional traffic signs and variable message boards will be installed in the project area in good time to inform motorists about the closures and the alternative route.

The Sherman Minton Renewal project will rehabilitate and paint the 61-year-old structure, extending the life of the six-lane double-deck bridge that carries traffic over the Ohio River between Louisville, Kentucky, and New Albany, Indiana, by up to 30 years.

To follow the progress of the project, go to www.ShermanMintonRenewal.com.

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