Friday, April 20, 2018
Transportation

Bridge over canal at Seminole and Starkey will widen, eventually

Readers have inquired about work on Ulmerton Road, specifically the two-lane bridge over the canal between Seminole Boulevard and Starkey Road. Ulmerton has been widened to three lanes, but the bridge remains two lanes and traffic backups are growing longer every day, especially with the influx of winter visitors. Readers have asked if there are plans to widen the bridge to match the rest of the roadway.

The answer is yes, the bridge will eventually be widened to three lanes in each direction, however, there's no start date set for the work. The state Department of Transportation is waiting for the contractor to submit a work schedule for this portion of the Ulmerton improvement. Stay tuned.

Does anyone know when work will begin again on the Progress Energy Trail since being taken over by Duke Energy? I have waited anxiously to use it, but fear I will pass away from old age before completion.

Jan Stiffler

There's good news and not so good news on the much-anticipated next section of the Progress/Duke Energy Trail. First, Pinellas County is waiting for Duke Energy to execute a lease and joint partnership agreement. Once that happens, things can proceed. But even if the papers were signed this week, it will take at least a full year or longer for construction to begin. The preconstruction milestones include finalization of construction plans and specifications, letting the construction contract out to bid, and the process of awarding the construction contract followed by preconstruction phases, according to a spokesman from the county's engineering and technical support department.

Barricade watch

In Seminole, drainage and roadway improvement work will close Freedom Boulevard at Crestview Street this week beginning Monday. A detour route will be set up; the road is scheduled to reopen Friday.

In the Highpoint area, milling and road resurfacing work that began last week will be ongoing until early May east 62nd Avenue N and south of Roosevelt Boulevard. Expect intermittent lane closures and delays.

In Clearwater, sidewalk ramp construction requiring intermittent lane closures and delays along Keene Road from Belleair Road to Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard should be wrapped up by Feb. 14.

Also in Clearwater, Gulfview Boulevard from Second to Fifth streets will be closed to traffic beginning Friday through Sunday because of the Clearwater Uncorked event. Suggested detour routes are Coronado and Hamden drives.

Email Dr. Delay at [email protected] or follow @AskDrDelay on Twitter.

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