orThe Cairo Bridge that connects western Kentucky to Southern Illinois is opening five days ahead of schedule after being closed for almost four weeks. Having traveled the bridge many times, it's like a lifeline to (not only Cairo) but to Southeast Missouri and beyond.
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet said the Ohio River bridge had been scheduled to open August 31. The bridge serves as a north to south connection for U.S. 51 between Wickliffe, Kentucky to Cairo, Illinois. It's also an east to west transportation corridor for U.S. 60 and U.S. 62. 7,000 vehicles cross the bridge daily. If you're wanting to head over to Cape Girardeau, Sikeston, or Poplar Bluff, Missouri, (leading to the Ozarks) this is the route.
The cabinet says the contractor plans to reopen the bridge to one-lane traffic sometime Wednesday. The bridge will continue to be restricted with alternating flow controlled by an automated signal until around Oct. 1.
One lane traffic isn't ideal, but the alternative route can take quite a bit longer to navigate. I'm sure those that have used the bridge for decades will be very happy to see it taking on traffic once again, even if it's only 50% until October.