Cincinnati finally will have an improved way to drive east to west.
City and county officials announced Tuesday that Cincinnati has secured funds to replace the Western Hills Viaduct. The bridge, which connects South Fairmont to CUF and the I-75 corridor, was built in the 1930s and has been deteriorating severely over the years.
Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley said during a Sept. 14 briefing that the $335 million viaduct replacement will be done through federal, state and local funding, including a .8% gas tax that voters in Hamilton County approved earlier this year. SORTA (Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority) will kick in an additional $8.2 million over the next 25 years.
SORTA board members will vote on the plan next week.
“This is a day that many of us have been waiting for for a very, very, very long time,” Cranley said.
The new bridge will have four lanes of traffic both eastbound and westbound, plus it will feature a multi-modal path and sidewalk. It will be built alongside the current viaduct, which will remain open during construction. Officials expect the new viaduct to be completed by 2028, with some saying the project could be finished even earlier.
“The West Side is back. And now there’s going to be a beautiful new viaduct that’s safe and bike-friendly,” Cranley said.
The Western Hills Viaduct carries about 50,000 vehicles per day, according to the city’s website.
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