State Road 56 extension from Wesley Chapel to Zephryhills to open today

The 6-mile extension will have a trail, bike lanes and a sidewalk.
OCTAVIO JONES   |   Times 
A view of State Road 56 overpass of Interstate 75 westbound in Wesley Chapel on Monday, December 17, 2018.
OCTAVIO JONES | Times A view of State Road 56 overpass of Interstate 75 westbound in Wesley Chapel on Monday, December 17, 2018.
Published July 10
Updated July 10

The extension of State Road 56 from Meadow Pointe Boulevard to U.S. 301 is set to open today. It’s being touted as a road that will lift the profile of Pasco County.

“It just starts to set the stage for a premiere county, which we are,” Pasco County Commission chairman Ron Oakley said at Tuesday’s meeting.

The 6-mile extension will feature four lanes and includes a trail on the south side of the road, a sidewalk on the north side and bicycle lanes in each direction, according to the Florida Department of Transportation. Traffic signals were installed at the intersections of S.R. 56 at Morris Bridge Road at and U.S. 301.

Funding for the road was first established in 2016 by the Commission. It links U.S. 19 and U.S. 301.

Construction teams have been working at nearly all hours so the new road could be opened a few months earlier than scheduled, according to state officials. Construction began in 2017.

Officials were given a preview of the new road Tuesday. Oakley said it is a beautiful highway where people are able to see old Florida.

“It’s the right thing for our citizens,” Oakley said.

Contact Sarah Verschoor at sverschoor@tampabay.com. Follow @SarahVerschoor.

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