Environmental Protection Agency

A complicated balance of highways, bridges, and natural beauty.

Over the next couple of years, the Ohio River will get two new bridges. One will run through downtown Louisville; the other will sit about eight miles outside the city.

The $2.6 billion Ohio River Bridges project aims to alleviate traffic and encourage economic growth. It is a result of three decades of community discussions on how to connect the I-265 in Louisville to the I-265 on the other side of the river. The bridge will create a completed beltway around Louisville, connecting the two ends of the I-265 over low-density neighborhoods and green space.

Thanks to a settlement between Kentucky, Indiana, and the National Trust for Historic Preservation, money has been set aside for the removal of historic properties near the future downtown bridge. Houses are now being moved through city streets in Jeffersonville, Indiana, to make way for that bridge.

Forty-one years ago, photographer William Strode photographed daily life along the Ohio River for the EPA's Documerica photo project. Strode's images show us life on the Ohio River, a complicated balance of highways, natural beauty, and boaters.

Below, courtesy the National Archives, Strode's Documerica photos along the river:

"State And County Police Patrol The Ohio River, June 1972"

"Paddlewheel Steamboats Seen From Banks Of Ohio River, May 1972"

"The Fourth Annual Spring Sunfish Regatta Of The Louisville Sailing Club, June 1972"

"The Ohio River, May 1972"

"Belle Of Louisiana, A Paddlewheel Steamboat Owned By Louisville And Jefferson County, May 1972"

Smog Hangs Over Louisville And Ohio River, September 1972"

"

"Automobile Junkyard Can Be Seen From High Rise Buildings In Downtown, September 1972"

"Litter Left In The Ohio River, June 1972"

"Camping Along The Ohio River, June 1972"

"The Ohio River, June 1972"

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. Environment

    Let's All Swim in the Once-Filthy Canals of Paris

    Unlike many cities, the French capital has made good on its promise to re-open urban waterways to bathers. How did they do it?  

  2. Design

    What's Inside a Neighborhood in a Box?

    On the outskirts of New York City, a new housing model aimed at Millennials asks: What is city living?

  3. Transportation

    5 Reasons to Be Wary of Elon Musk's Hyperloop

    High-speed vactrains might be the ticket for a Martian colony. As a practical transit investment for Earth, the technology has a long way to go.

  4. Life

    Say Goodbye to Spain's Glorious Three-Hour Lunch Break

    Catalonia plans to shorten work hours—but don’t call it the end of the siesta.

  5. Planes stream above Paris's Place de L'Étoile in celebration of Bastille Day
    Design

    Donald Trump's Grasp of French History, Urban Planning Is Limited

    However, he's not completely wrong about Napoleon.