Blue Bridge Scheduled to Open Tomorrow

The bridge, closed since May, will be open for traffic at noon Wednesday.
Noon is lunch time for most Tri-Staters. But tomorrow, it'll be the time to use the Blue Bridge in Owensboro again. Crews have wrapped up the re-painting started back in May. That means the more than 8,500 drivers who use the bridge each day can take it to work and home once more.

"I can't wait. I feel like I've been let out of jail or something," says Beverly Velotta of Velotta's Fireworks in Spencer County. She's felt trapped since the Blue Bridge closed earlier this year.

"You can imagine, having to drive around to the doctor's, or to the drug store," she says. "But all my friends are over there, and they don't want to drive around, so, I've been pretty much stuck here by myself."

But tomorrow, she, and thousands of others won't be stuck anymore.

"I'm looking forward to that bridge opening," Velotta says. Kentucky transportation officials say the bridge will open for traffic at noon tomorrow after more than six months of painting, and waiting.

"It's great that we can open it this year," says Kevin McClearn of the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet. He says despite a two-week delay, contractors were able to finish work before the start of the new year. He adds the project was under budget even with some extra structural work.

"We had a few change orders, we did more deck and curb work and beam work, which is very important when you got the structure shut down," he says.

Velotta says despite the closing costing her business this year, she hopes the bridge won't close again, which would leave her feeling trapped once again.

"I think it's a little prettier color of blue," says Velotta.

While the bridge re-opening was delayed for about two weeks to give contractors more time, transportation officials say that delay would prevent possible closings next year.
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