Clark Memorial Bridge to be completely repainted for first time since 1980s

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The Second Street Bridge is getting some new paint.

Work to repaint the bridge will begin on Monday, Feb. 26, but it won't be finished until November 2019.

The 1929 bridge has some rusted steel, and the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet says a deep-clean and paint job are necessary to preserve the bridge and make it last longer.

The last time the entire bridge was painted was in the 1980s.

During the project, traffic will be reduced to one lane in each direction, and pedestrians and cyclists won't be able to use the bridge.

"They're going to get frustrated, it's going to be a long time," Matt Bullock, KYTC District 5 Chief Engineer, said about travelers facing the construction. "The problem with that bridge is it has so much steel surface area. It actually has more steel surface area than the Kennedy. So to go all the way through next year is going to be a long time."

KYTC says the most difficult part of the project will be the cleaning. Contractors will have to blast all of the previous paint off of the bridge. During the phase, the entire bridge has to be contained so none of the debris falls into the river.

After receiving several bids, Spartan Contracting LLC of Hubbard, Ohio was awarded the $27.9 million contract for the project.

"It's to preserve it and make it last longer so in the end, before it gets in really bad shape to have to replace," Bullock said. "This is money well spent." 

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