Work, delays continue during Carroll Cropper Bridge construction - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Work, delays continue during Carroll Cropper Bridge construction

(PHOTO: FOX19 NOW/ Ben Katko) (PHOTO: FOX19 NOW/ Ben Katko)

You could call the Carroll Cropper Bridge between Indiana and Kentucky one of the faster ways to get to and from each side.  But lately, construction on the bridge has made it anything but a quick way to get around.

Some 33,000 motorists travel the bridge every day, and experience the backups.  

Those backups, while creating big headaches for drivers, some in Lawrenceburg are truly seeing a benefit.

"This is where they've been coming.  It's helped me,” said Lannie Cummins, who owns Cummins Café Delights near the Ohio River.
For Cummins, business has been good these days.  It’s not because of any new advertising or shiny signage.  It’s because of the bridge full of backed up traffic.

"A lot of people will stay over here at the hotel.  They know - they've heard about the bridge traffic, and they know there's going to be a wait at that time of the morning, so they're looking for some place to eat breakfast,” Cummins told FOX19 NOW on Thursday.
The Carroll Cropper Bridge project has a price tag of $6.7 million, and was started in May. 

"Road construction is never pretty.  That's one of my taglines that I use.  But the work is needed,” said Nancy Wood with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet.

The bridge is getting new joints, new lights and a resurfacing.

“We’ve removed the bridge deck and are putting down new concrete to give it a smoother ride.  We’re also replacing some of the bridge joints, and we’re also adding roadway lighting,” Wood said.

"I think it needed done to an extent because the roads were starting to show a little age,” said Daniel Hudson who lives in Lawrenceburg.
To get all the work done, those backups have become routine.  On Wednesday, a truck too big to fit through the single lane traffic flow blocked traffic for hours.  

"I haven't taken it often.  I go out of my way to avoid it if I can,” Hudson said.

State transportation officials say they expected the headaches.  

“We knew it was going to be a tough project because that’s the only route over there,” Wood told FOX19 NOW by phone.  “The numbers and the studies showed that there would be some long delays and backups.”

Because of the headaches, a new merge pattern has been added called a “zipper merge” to help move traffic along. 

The work will continue into mid-December, and for Lannie Cummins and her business, that’s plenty of time to enjoy the new, unexpected business.

"Never expected that in a million years,” Cummins said.

The project is expected to be completed by December 15.

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