THE PROBLEM: DFO approves the Turkey Oak bypass study.
OUR OPINION: A wise decision.
As Suncoast 2 draws to a close, its upcoming opening is of concern to officials at Crystal River, who expect the impact of additional traffic in the city‘s downtown – US 19 and State Road 44. – will not only create a major bottleneck. for motorists, but also a further loss of community connectivity to the detriment of business owners and residents.
This is why city officials have been pushing for a North Turkey Oak bypass as the best remedy to alleviate a debilitating traffic bottleneck in the city’s downtown core and ensure the livability of the small town.
The Hernando-Citrus Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) obviously agreed, voting unanimously to pay $ 248,500 to its consultant, Kimley-Horn and Associates, to conduct a feasibility study on the Turkey Oak bypass project. The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) agreed to cover the cost of the study.
The bypass study is expected to last one year. If the idea proves feasible, the battle for a source of funding begins before construction begins. If this does not prove feasible, the study will provide other viable alternatives.
Kimley Horn will examine two things: whether Turkey Oak can handle the expected increase in vehicle numbers given the current condition of its pavement and how that would affect other roads in the region.
Other factors that we hope to see addressed include security and land issues. Along Turkey Oak is an entrance to Crystal River High School as well as the residents who currently live along the road. These are other factors that should be taken into account in the study.
As Kevin Cunningham recently pointed out in a guest column, “Future investments in our county’s ‘streets’ should be aimed at making Citrus County the best place it can be, calming traffic where it’s needed, to beautify the public domain and to support the growth of local entrepreneurs. . “
It is an important part of the town of Crystal River. The study is a good first step in finding a viable solution not only for residents and business owners of Crystal River and Citrus County, but also for travelers in and across the region.