Skip to comments.After Irma, new energy for Interstate 75 relief
Posted on 02/16/2018 5:09:16 PM PST by Tolerance Sucks Rocks
In mid-2016, a regional task force that spent almost two years exploring ways to improve safety on a crowded Interstate 75 decided to take a conservative approach: make changes to the highway rather than build or expand other roads.
Then Hurricane Imra blew into Florida and thousands of people trying to flee its path got stuck, many of them in Ocala and points north and south. Now, a new road with a potential route through Marion and Alachua counties may be back on the table, if not exactly speeding ahead.
"I think they are going to do it despite any concerns by the locals. The locals told them they didn't want it," said Alachua County Commissioner Robert Hutchinson. "I think between the desire to open up rural areas for development and the desire for evacuation routes and the fact that the interstates are jammed they are going to do it."
Florida Department of Transportation Chief Planner Jim Wood said two studies are now underway, and that any potential new limited access road is a long way off.
One study by FDOT centers on future expansion of I-75. The other by Florida Turnpike Enterprise is exploring the lengthening into Citrus and Marion counties of the Suncoast Parkway, a road that is called the "Coastal Connector."
Both studies should be complete by year's end. Turnpike Enterprise is a separate business unit of FDOT that oversees the turnpike and toll road system.
(Excerpt) Read more at fresnobee.com ...
Sure- just pave over a State that is exactly like the Bahamas and just about as far above sea level, which drains water into an aquifer that supports 200 feet of limestone sponge topped with. Then watch where the water can’t go and ... people cannot live.
No— what needs to happen is 4 LANES NORTH, cooperative with adjacent states, and giving people somewhere to actually go. Educate the “new” non-floridian native residents as to not piss around and get the hell out. Florida is an Island, pretending to be a peninsula. Simple as that.
“Wood said the expansion study will explore routing the parkway into Marion County, where it would link to I-75. But that would not ease I-75 traffic in Alachua County, where many residents use the interstate as a speedier way to get around city streets.”
Note: The Alachua County Commission at one time tried pass approval of a highway circling Gainesville, so that I-75 could bypass Gainesville altogether, and people could easily travel this highway to bypass the congestion of downtown. The effort failed because the County Commission felt that if they built the bypass along the Kelly power route, that the city would build out to it.
Instead the City/county have decided to reduce four lane roads through downtown Gainesville to two lane so as to encourage regional transport and pedestrian/bicycle travel. A lot of road taxes go into these efforts.
A further note: why not have the last exit traveling north in Marion or Levy Counties, and the next exit in Columbia County north of Gainesville.
One issue that will bear on this is that a large port is being developed north of Tampa for super container ships, that now can travel through the Panama Canal, since its enlargement recently. The state wants a rail/highway corridor northeast from the Tampa area to Jacksonville on the east coast.
I wouldn’t have a problem with the Suncoast simply continuing north into Georgia, and then GDOT could build their section, whatever they might call it, and hook it up to I-75 and I-16 near Macon.
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