Yes. There is an alternative proposal gaining support called the Cincy Eastern Bypass, and it is estimated to cost about half of the current plan for the Brent Spence Bridge Corridor.
The proposal calls for modest improvements to the Brent Spence Bridge and the construction of a bypass to route thru-traffic around the urban core. Estimates have put the cost of improvements to the Bridge at about $100 million, with the cost of a new bypass estimated at $1.1 Billion. In total, about half the cost of the current plan.
How would it help?
Improvements to the Brent Spence Bridge:
The suggested improvements to the Brent Spence Bridge include adding a left hand exit at Fourth Street in Covington, rerouting the Fourth Street entrance ramp in Covington back to Pike Street, slight adjustments to the geometry of the remaining ramps, and resumed maintenance on the bridge to restore its appearance on protect it from rust and corrosion.
The exit and entrance ramps at Fourth Street in Covington contribute to both safety concerns and congestion. Modest changes can reduce the lane weaving that contributes to safety concerns on the Bridge while effectively increasing capacity by removing the three-lane northbound stretch on the approach.
These minor changes would address most of the problems with the Bridge in an affordable, sensible way. The cost could easily be born by existing highway funds, making tolls unnecessary.
The Cincy Eastern Bypass:
Building the Cincy Eastern Bypass will improve traffic flow and congestion on I-75, I-71, and I-275 by diverting thru-traffic, and many of the large trucks, from the existing route. According to OKI, approximately 25% of the traffic on the Brent Spence Bridge is thru-traffic that does not stop in our region. Diverting one fourth of the traffic around the region would add one lane of capacity on the Brent Spence and I-75/I-71 for use by local travelers.
You can learn more about the Cincy Eastern Bypass at http://cincyeasternbypass.com/