Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Dr. Delay | Navigating south Pinellas

Park Boulevard groove jostles motorists

Beware of ricocheting vehicles on Park Boulevard between U.S. 19 and the Frontage Road intersection.

When heading east on Park toward the Gandy area, construction on that stretch of road includes a deep groove in the pavement east of U.S. 19 near the intersection of Park Boulevard and the Pinellas Park exit off northbound I-275.

The groove is the width of an average tire tread, and it converges at one point with a second groove creating an abrupt jostling effect similar to a train changing tracks.

Motorists unfamiliar with the condition are taken by surprise judging by the Doc's observation, resulting in a momentary loss of control.

Last week, the Doc was following a vehicle that hit the tire-tread groove — narrowly missing the side of the vehicle traveling in the left lane. A call was later made to the city's transportation department to request warning signs about the uneven pavement. It's not much, but it might help until the road is resurfaced.

While discussing the project, we asked for a status update on the Park Boulevard project. Thomas B. Gibson, the city's engineering director, said the work includes widening, milling and resurfacing of approximately 2 miles of Gandy Boulevard from Grand Avenue (Gateway Center) to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street N.

We will see the addition of a 12-foot-wide travel lane and a 5-foot-wide paved shoulder/bicycle lane in each direction. Work also includes the realignment of the 94th Avenue N/Gandy Boulevard service road, and the 16th Street N intersection with Gandy near Metropointe Commerce Park.

Gibson said the project, developed by the city in cooperation with the Florida Department of Transportation and property owners, will meet needs imposed by increased traffic. Along with the 16th Street intersection realignment, commuters will notice better traffic flow and accessibility to the Gateway Center Business Park and Metropointe Commerce Park. The project, scheduled for completion in June 2011, costs $5,621,315.

Speed humps

City outlines criteria for 'traffic calming' devices

Reader Bob Lux asked us about the origin of speed humps that have recently surfaced in the Tyrone area.

Lux wrote: "Does St. Petersburg use any criteria to determine where speed bumps are installed? They are popping up everywhere and making commuting in the city almost impossible. The latest examples are three speed bumps that were recently installed on 72nd Street N south of 22nd Avenue N. The empty Raytheon manufacturing facility is along this stretch of 72nd Street N — why would an empty parking lot be a reason to install more speed bumps?"

Yes, there are specific criteria before the installation of speed humps and other "traffic calming" devices in the city. Neighborhood residents must request a traffic study and participate in a planning process with the city. The majority of residents must then sign off on the proposed construction of traffic calming devices.

Mike Frederick, the city's manager of neighborhood transportation, said the city was notified by the neighborhood's Community Police Unit that enforcement was not having any effect on lowering vehicle speeds.

"They were concerned that with average operating speeds 15 mph over the posted speed limit of 25 mph that it was only a matter of time that someone using the park facilities on the west side of the roadway would be injured or worse. So they asked us to consider speed humps and to coordinate an amendment to the Azalea Homes Neighborhood Traffic Plan. While this may not be a residential area, there were significant enough concerns, because of the adjacent park, for the police and the association to request the installation of speed humps," Frederick said.

Doc Delay is on twitter. Get news from the road at Contact Dr. Delay at [email protected] to share your traffic concerns, comments and questions. Questions selected for publication may be edited for space and clarity.

Dr. Delay | Navigating south Pinellas

Park Boulevard groove jostles motorists 07/10/10 [Last modified: Friday, July 9, 2010 5:39pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. No. 16 USF hangs on at Tulane, off to first 7-0 start


    NEW ORLEANS — After half a season of mismatches, USF found itself in a grudge match Saturday night.

    USF quarterback Quinton Flowers (9) runs for a touchdown against Tulane during the first half of an NCAA college football game in New Orleans, La., Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017. (AP Photo/Derick E. Hingle) LADH103
  2. Lightning buries Penguins (w/video)

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Ryan Callahan spent a lot of time last season rehabilitating his injured hip alongside Steven Stamkos, who was rehabbing a knee after season-ending surgery. During those hours, Callahan noticed two things about Stamkos: his hunger and his excitement to return this season.

    Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Slater Koekkoek (29) advances the puck through the neutral zone during the first period of Saturday???‚??„?s (10/21/17) game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Pittsburgh Penguins at Amalie Arena in Tampa.
  3. Spain planning to strip Catalonia of its autonomy


    BARCELONA, Spain — The escalating confrontation over Catalonia's independence drive took its most serious turn Saturday as Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy of Spain announced he would remove the leadership of the restive region and initiate a process of direct rule by the central government in Madrid.

    Demonstrators in Barcelona protest the decision to take control of Catalonia to derail the independence movement.
  4. Funeral held for soldier at center of political war of words (w/video)


    COOPER CITY — Mourners remembered not only a U.S. soldier whose combat death in Africa led to a political fight between President Donald Trump and a Florida congresswoman but his three comrades who died with him.

    The casket of Sgt. La David T. Johnson of Miami Gardens, who was killed in an ambush in Niger. is wheeled out after a viewing at the Christ The Rock Church, Friday, Oct. 20, 2017  in Cooper City, Fla. (Pedro Portal/Miami Herald via AP) FLMIH102
  5. Chemical industry insider now shapes EPA policy


    WASHINGTON — For years, the Environmental Protection Agency has struggled to prevent an ingredient once used in stain-resistant carpets and nonstick pans from contaminating drinking water.

    This is the Dow chemical plant near Freeport, Texas. Before the 2016 election, Dow had been in talks with the EPA to phase out the pesticide chlorpyrifos, which is blamed for disabilities in children. Dow is no longer willing to compromise.