Governor Ron DeSantis recently signed a measure that is aimed at expanding the Suncoast Parkway and other toll roads on the west side of Florida. This bill contains plans to extend the Suncoast Parkway from Citrus County to the Georgia line. The Suncoast Parkway extension could provide an alternative route for motorists traveling between Tallahassee and Northwest Florida.
When Hurricane Irma arrived in 2017, many motorists utilized the Suncoast Parkway to evacuate the area. During the evacuation, the end of the parkway at U.S. 98 was turned into a literal parking lot with all the backed-up cars. Roads that are typically free of congestion were now a blockade of cars and spoiled hurricane supplies. With this plan to take the parkway from Citrus County all the way to Georgia, there is hope that the evacuation congestion could be fixed. Hernando and Citrus County leaders have given their support for this major expansion plan to be executed.
FLORIDA’S LARGEST HIGHWAY EXPANSION IN OVER 60 YEARS
Construction started on Phase 1 from US 98 to SR 44 in February 2018. The 13-mile stretch is expected to be completed by 2022. The funding for this project is based on Turnpike tolls and concession revenues. This highway expansion is the largest expansion since the mid-1950’s. The current Suncoast Parkway stretches just under 60 miles from Hillsborough County to Citrus County. With this ambitious new plan, the road would extend another 150 miles to Georgia. The economic impact to this region could be a boom for local businesses and the local construction industry.
HELICON PLAYS A PART IN THE SUNCOAST PARKWAY EXPANSION
Helicon was recently contracted to remediate soil in certain areas along the 13-mile Suncoast Parkway extension. Compaction grout was the remedy that Helicon provided to stabilize these areas on the parkway. For now, our part is done but we are ready in case the final expansion to Georgia needs soil remediation. We are proud to be a part of this monumental transportation project.