$19 M road upgrade planned

Jesse Hollett
Posted 10/4/17

DOCTORS INLET – A $19 million plan to redesign an often-clogged section of County Road 220 from Knight Boxx Road to Shamrock Drive could begin as early as 2021, according to county and state …

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$19 M road upgrade planned

Posted

DOCTORS INLET – A $19 million plan to redesign an often-clogged section of County Road 220 from Knight Boxx Road to Shamrock Drive could begin as early as 2021, according to county and state transportation officials.

Florida Department of Transportation officials held a community information session on Sept. 28 to gather public input from motorists and residents who travel and live near that stretch of roadway. The initial plans call for adding two new lanes, rehabbing the bridge over Little Black Creek and adding sidewalks and bike lanes. Highpoint Community Church hosted the community event.

Many who drive on the stretch of CR 220 can share similar tales of the often-congested road. Traffic bottlenecks happen when the road shifts from four lanes to two lanes shortly before crossing the Little Black Creek Bridge.

Officials also aim to add two turn lanes to the Henley Road intersection turning south in an effort to speed traffic there as well.

As far as the bridge, state transportation officials aim to coordinate planning and design for the bridge and help orchestrate the flow of county and state dollars with more oversight over the project.

“Right now, the bridge over [Little] Black Creek is structurally deficient,” said David Tyler, an FDOT project manager. “We need to replace the bridge, that’s the main driving fact behind this. And obviously the Henley Road and 220 is a real bottleneck and we’re seeing a lot of growth in that area so it’s really to just add some capacity there and help facilitate growth along CR 220.”

FDOT estimates that between 2016 and 2040, the number of daily drivers between the impacted stretch of road will grow from nearly 20,000 to 48,000.

Tyler said FDOT does not foresee that any businesses will have any trouble getting into their businesses during the construction of the project.

The county and FDOT are still in the planning and design phases of the project, but hope to split the bill roughly 50-50 between state and county coffers.

“…We’re doing the road portion of it and the DOT is doing the bridge portion,” said Stephanie Kopelousos, county manager.

The Clay County Board of County Commissioners identified the plan to upgrade this particular section of road was last April. Commissioners cited the long wait times on the road and the expected growth in the area as chief concerns to prioritize the project.

The county aims to eventually four lane the road all the way to State Road 21, however this project only covers the approximately mile and a half stretch between Shamrock and Knight Boxx.

County Commissioner Gayward Hendry gave traffic jams on sections of CR 220 the dubious title of “hideous” in an April meeting designed to identify transportation improvement projects for the 2016 fiscal year through the 2020 fiscal year.

Other road projects on the commission’s priority list involve widening County Road 220 to six lanes from College Drive eastward to U.S. Highway 17 and widen County Road 209 to four lanes from U.S. 17 to Sandridge Road – among other projects.

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