Emergency repair to Brent Spence Bridge wins national award

By Rachel Nix, Building Kentucky

The American Public Works Association (APWA) honored the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet with its Public Works Project of the Year award for its quick repair of the Brent Spence Bridge following a truck crash and fire last year.

The repair was among a selected group of projects that showed “amazing collaborative efforts to build and rebuild America’s infrastructure” by APWA in the disaster or emergency construction repair category.

“This nationally recognized bridge has now earned Kentucky national praise for the great work performed by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet and its contractors to turn a crisis into an accomplishment. The expert repairs not only led to the quick reopening of an economically significant corridor during a bustling holiday season, but it preserved the safe condition of a bridge that will remain in service for decades to come.”

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear

About the Brent Spence Bridge Repair

The Brent Spence Bridge carries 160,000 vehicles a day across the Ohio River between Covington and Cincinnati on I-71 and I-75. It was abruptly closed last November after two tractor-trailers collided on the bridge’s lower deck, causing fire damage to a portion of the bridge. The bridge was reopened 41 days later to traffic – fully restored, under budget and ahead of schedule.

“It would be hard to imagine a more challenging scenario. Abrupt loss of a critical connection on one of the busiest commercial corridors in the eastern United States. A global COVID pandemic. And winter weather. We conquered this combination of factors by quickly assembling a great team, being innovative and then working night and day without letup.”

Jim Gray, Secretary of the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC)

The Team Behind the Award

APWA credited the success of the project to “simultaneous efforts on multiple fronts, quick thinking and innovative project development and procurement used by KYTC and the engineering team,” which included the consultant Michael Baker International Inc., and the contractor, Kokosing Construction Co. who are both also involved in other transformative Kentucky projects.

As part of the Sherman Minton Renewal project, C2 Strategic Communications is working closely with both companies in preparation for the start of phase one construction. Michael Baker International Inc. is the engineering lead and Kokosing Construction Company, Inc. is the design-build/best value contractor for this important bi-state project. The major rehabilitation will add up to 30 years of life to the Sherman Minton Bridge.

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