US 68/KY 80 is the only east-west gateway into the Land Between The Lakes. The highway also serves as the primary east-west connector for Murray and Cadiz. The project calls for a completed four-lane highway from Mayfield through Murray, Aurora, Land Between The Lakes and on to Cadiz.
Large sections of the project are finished, including Mayfield to Lake Barkley, including a new four-lane bridge crossing Kentucky Lake (known as Eggners Ferry Bridge).
The old Eggners Ferry Bridge as well as the existing Henry Lawrence Bridge (crossing Lake Barkley) are "functionally obsolete" not meeting today's transportation needs.
Eggners Ferry Bridge was demolished when the new bridge was completed in 2016. The Henry Lawrence Bridge is set to close in early 2018, with the new four-lane bridge replacing it.
Both bridges were built in 1932. Budget issues delayed the bridges for decades. However, construction started on Kentucky Lake's new bridge in earnest in 2012 with Lake Barkley's bridge in 2015.
The price tag for both bridges is estimated just under $300 million.
Here is a Project Timeline that dates back to 1992. Back in those days, the bridges were anticipated being built and ready for traffic near the turn of the century.