FDOT has begun a study that will take about 18 months to complete, its staff says; in the meantime, resurfacing of U.S. 41 still is planned in downtown Sarasota starting this fall
The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) has notified the City of Sarasota that it expects to conduct a public meeting this fall regarding plans to improve the intersection of Gulfstream Avenue and U.S. 41 in downtown Sarasota, including the potential for constructing a roundabout there.
Chris Smith, director of transportation development for FDOT’s District One, sent an email on Aug. 16 to city staff, saying the state agency also anticipates holding a public hearing on the project in the fall of 2017. In the meantime, he wrote, staff is beginning a Project Development and Environment (PD&E) study for the improvements. He directed city staff to a website with details:
The PD&E study will take about 18 months to complete, Smith added; design plans for the preferred alternative should be completed by 2019.
“The FDOT is evaluating the intersection at US 41 and Gulfstream Avenue to improve pedestrian and bicycle connectivity between the City of Sarasota’s Downtown Central Business District and the Bayfront area while improving vehicular traffic flow and operations,” he wrote. “Alternatives under consideration include a roundabout and improvements to the existing signalized intersection. This study will determine the conceptual design of the preferred intersection alternative,” he added.
Further, FDOT will use newsletters and look for opportunities to make presentations to neighborhoods, small groups and organizations, so the public will be aware of the plans for the roundabout, Smith wrote.
The City of Sarasota also is continuing its planning for proposed roundabouts on U.S. 41 at the 10th and 14th street intersections. Funding of $1,435,000 has been designated for each of those projects in the city’s draft Capital Improvement Plan for the 2017 fiscal year.
The total cost of the 10th Street project, according to the draft CIP, is $8,376,00, with construction estimated to begin in the 2018 fiscal year. The 14th street roundabout has been projected to cost $5,196,000, with its construction also tentatively set to start in the 2018 fiscal year.
In the meantime, FDOT this fall will start resurfacing U.S. 41 between Bay Street and the vicinity of the 10th Street roundabout, City Engineer Alexandrea DavisShaw told The Sarasota News Leader on Aug. 24. A notice FDOT provided to the city indicated that work would start in October and conclude in June 2017, she said. She had no specific details, she added.