News Releases - June 6, 2008

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 6, 2008

Contact: Keith Todd
Public Information Officer
District 1 & 2 270-898-2431
(0ffice) 270-210-8009 (Mobile)
keith.todd@ky.gov

Lake bridges public meeting postponed
Cost estimate prompts design changes to reduce cost

PADUCAH, Ky. — A public meeting on the US 68/KY 80 lake bridges project, originally scheduled for June 12 at Lake Barkley State Park, has been postponed.

Cabinet officials say the meeting is being postponed to allow cost adjustments to be made to the final four proposed designs before they are presented for public comment.

'In recent weeks our consultant came forward with more realistic cost estimates that put the total cost of the two bridges at up to $540 million,' said Bill Gulick, Executive Advisor in the Transportation Cabinet. 'That cost estimate would have likely pushed construction of the bridges back 10 to 20 years, or more.'

Officials will reexamine possible designs to see if project costs can be reduced before rescheduling the public meeting. A new date will most likely be set within the next few months.

“We appreciate the many citizens who have taken time to participate in the lake bridges design process. That input has been, and will continue to be, valuable in providing us with direction. We look forward to rescheduling the public meeting once the design team works through issues to help the bridges fit our budget restrictions,” Gulick said.

Serving as gateways to the Land Between the Lakes, the bridges will be about eight miles apart, connected by a new four-lane section of US 68/KY 80. The new structures will replace the Eggner’s Ferry Bridge across Kentucky Lake at Aurora and the Lawrence Memorial Bridge across Lake Barkley at Canton.