Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Rain delays Belleair Causeway closing

Another closure is planned for the Belleair Causeway Bridge this week with overnight shutdowns scheduled from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. Tuesday and Wednesday to allow for work to be done above the existing drawbridge. The recommended detour route from the beaches to the mainland is Gulf Boulevard south through Indian Rocks Beach to Walsingham Road/State Road 686, and over the Intracoastal Waterway bridge. Recent rain moved the closure back by one day; this phase of work was originally planned to begin Monday and last until Tuesday.

Workers will remove temporary support structures on the new bridge during the closures. County officials say the bridge replacement project is on schedule and has now reached the halfway point.

For more information on the project, visit the dedicated Web site, which has news and updates as well as a live Web cam of the progress,

Crews trying to keep up with vegetation boom

The regular rain has spurred plant growth around town, so much so that maintenance crews are challenged trying to keep up. Some of the overgrowth near roadways is creating safety concerns.

The Doc has been receiving complaints from readers about overgrown grassy areas adjacent to interstate entrance and exit ramps. Grass has grown so high in some locations that visibility is obstructed.

One example is the grassy area at the end of Interstate 275's 22nd Avenue S exit. The grass was waist-high last week, which was a concern for lower-sitting vehicles as the sight line of oncoming traffic was blocked. We spoke with Cliff Footlick, director of the city's Parks Department, who said his crews maintain the landscaping in the medians around town, but the DOT contracts with outside vendors to maintain the grassy turf areas around interstate ramps. We checked in with the DOT and learned that large machine mowing is easier and faster for workers to do, so those areas are done first, then workers go in on foot to cut the remainder. Most of the overgrown areas were mowed last week within a few days of our inquiry.

Storm sewer work will restrict Park Boulevard

Night work on multiple storm sewer crossings on Park Boulevard in Pinellas Park between 59th and 66th Streets will close two lanes of traffic beginning Aug. 24. The stretch of Park Boulevard is scheduled to be milled and repaved with work expected to last about four days. Traffic will be diverted down to one lane overnight as work progresses.

Please e-mail Dr. Delay at to share your traffic concerns, comments and questions. Check out Dr. Delay's Bay News 9 blog at to read more about commuting issues.


Barricade watch

Roadwork scheduled around the county this week:

Clearwater: McMullen-Booth Road (Drew Street to Ruth Eckerd Hall Drive) — milling and repaving; Stevenson Creek at Stevenson Drive — bridge abutment repair, also, that section of the Pinellas Trail is closed.

Palm Harbor: County Road 39 (Belcher Road to U.S. 19) — paving.

Seminole: 114th Avenue N and 131st Street N — drainage improvement work; Park Boulevard at Cross Bayou Canal east of 83rd Street N — bridge maintenance; Ridge Road from 84th Avenue N to 86th Avenue N — drainage work and sidewalk repairs.

Tierra Verde: Pinellas Bayway (Westshore/Eastshore Boulevard to Fort De Soto Park) — sidewalk improvement project.

Rain delays Belleair Causeway closing 08/16/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, November 2, 2010 11:38am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Minors also a training ground for umpires with big-league dreams

    The Heater

    Umpire Tom Fornarola, 23, left, and Taylor Payne, 24, facing, talk before the start of the Gulf Coast League game between the New York Yankees and the Detroit Tigers at the Tigertown complex in Lakeland, Fla. on Wednesday, July 5, 2017.
  2. In Florida, nation's only lightning center closes after DARPA cuts funding (w/video)


    University of Florida professor Martin Uman usually spends much of this summer at an old Army base about an hour northeast of Gainesville, shooting rockets at thunderclouds, then measuring the bright flashes of lightning that followed.

    Rocket-and-wire triggered lightning at the University of Florida's International Center for Lightning Research and Testing, which recently lost federal funding. A rocket trailing a grounded wire is launched toward an active thunderstorm at the ICLRT. One launch is from a tower, one from ground. When the wire is about as high as the Empire State Building, lightning is induced to strike the top of the wire, much as it strikes tall objects like the ESB. Interestingly, the cloud charge source is about 3 miles high, so a 300 yard-long wire can cause a 3 mile or more long lightning.  After that, there are several normal tortuous strokes ( downward leaders from the cloud charge/upward return strokes) which can be seen as the wind blows the individual strokes to the right. The time between strokes is about 50 thousands of a second. Between some strokes, continuing current can be seen. Continuing current is what generally starts forest fires. [Photo by Dr. Dustin Hill]
  3. Editorial: Reasonable clarity on gambling in Florida


    Gambling expansion strategies — and misfires — are nearly an annual ritual in Florida. There were the eight counties that voted to allow slot machines but were blocked by the Florida Supreme Court. There was the governor's $3 billion deal with the Seminole Tribe in 2015 that was never approved by the …

    Gov. Rick Scott agreed to a much simpler deal with the Seminole Tribe that embraces the status quo instead of expansion. And that’s a good thing.
  4. Amid U.S. real estate buying binge by foreign investors, Florida remains first choice

    Real Estate

    Foreign investment in U.S. residential real estate recently skyrocketed to a new high with nearly half of all foreign sales happening in Florida, California and Texas.

    A National Association of Realtors annual survey found record volume and activity by foreign buyers of U.S. real estate. Florida had the highest foreign investment activity, followed by California and Texas. [National Association of Realtors]
  5. Editorial: Hillsborough smartly embraces diversion program for youths


    Children who commit minor crimes can pay for their mistakes for a lifetime — losing a chance to attend college, join the military or obtain credit and a good job. That is unjust to the individuals and a burdensome cost to society, and Hillsborough County is taking the right new approach by giving some juveniles a …

    Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren has announced an agreement between law enforcement agencies and the courts that will allow first-time offenders who commit nonviolent crimes as juveniles to be issued civil citations rather than face an arrest and prosecution.