CINCINNATI (AP) — The Ohio Department of Transportation is supporting a legislative proposal that would require motorists to pay a toll to cross a major Ohio River bridge.

Sponsors say the bill introduced in the Ohio House on Tuesday is necessary to pave the way for a new bridge to handle traffic over the river on Interstate 71/75 in Cincinnati.

Plans call for an automated toll system on the current Brent Spence Bridge. The toll amount hasn't yet been set.

Ohio Department of Transportation Director Jerry Wray said in a statement that the legislation "will help us move forward with the revitalization of this heavily traveled corridor while improving accessibility and safety of local motorists."

The 51-year-old bridge carries about 172,000 vehicles daily between Cincinnati and Covington, Kentucky.