3rd Street exit on Columbia Pkwy still closed Monday

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - Crews have shut down the westbound Columbia Parkway ramp to Fort Washington Way and 3rd Street due to mudslide conditions.

It will remain closed through the rush hour commute on Monday morning. Cincinnati Police say it will be open by the evening.

Mudslide conditions are typical for this time of  year, and last week's warm-up is likely to blame for the issue.

"This is the time of year that you have to watch when you have the snow melts combined with the rainfall.  The ground is just saturated at this point," said Richard Pohana, Cincinnati's geotechnical engineer.

There have been mudslides up and down Columbia Parkway over the last few years.  In the area of this latest slide, engineers tell FOX19 they had noticed previous signs of movement.  Pohana says construction oversights more than 80 years ago could be the root of the problem.

"When they constructed the walls back in the 1930s, they didn't build them high enough, and they over cut the slope directly behind it.  They steepened it and didn't take the wall high enough," Pohana explained.

Pohana adds that these slides can happen nearly anywhere along the Columbia Parkway.  There are spots along the wall where there are other buildups.  Some can be fixed, but some can't for fear of a bigger problem.

"We go up and down the Parkway and look and make sure, and see if there's a spot that needs to be removed," Pohana told FOX19.

However, with this popular artery into downtown now shut down, drivers are feeling a little frustrated.

"I had to go that way to my father's house tonight.  They need to get that fixed as soon as possible," said Brian Hodge who lives in Columbia Tusculum.

To get traffic moving again, Pohana says a tree contractor will come in and clear trees.  To clear everything that slid down the hill, he says the city doesn't have the equipment to reach above the retaining wall along the roadway, so they'll have to contract that then haul away the debris.

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