- Associated Press - Saturday, December 5, 2015

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Officials say thousands of people walked along the new Abraham Lincoln Bridge on Saturday, two days before the bridge connecting Louisville and Jeffersonville, Indiana, opens for vehicle traffic.

Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear and Indiana Gov. Mike Pence cut a ribbon to open the six-lane, 2,100-foot-long bridge to the public on Saturday morning.

Officials say the bridge, which spans the Ohio River, is scheduled to open to vehicles on Monday at 5 a.m. Interstate-65 North traffic will shift to the bridge first. I-65 South traffic is expected to follow later in the month.

According to Beshear’s office, the Lincoln Bridge, an improved John F. Kennedy Bridge and reconstructed interchanges in downtown Louisville and Jeffersonville are part of the $2.3 billion Bridges Project.

The investment includes the East End Crossing, a new bridge between Utica, Indiana, and Prospect, Kentucky. The crossing will complete a long-sought cross-river connection that officials say can improve transportation and spur economic development in the region.

“The people on this bridge truly believed our citizens deserve a better, safer, smarter transportation system to keep traffic flowing and business growing for our children and our grandchildren,” Beshear said in a statement. “Because we came together, worked together, believed together, we built this bridge.”

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