Developers threaten Millhopper


Published: Monday, January 1, 2007 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, December 31, 2006 at 9:45 p.m.
The SpringHills Development is retail, industrial and residential development to be located on the 701 acres north of the I-75 and NW 39th Avenue interchange. The Pennsylvania-based development company has recently applied for a large-scale Comprehensive Plan Amendment which includes substantial deviations to its original 1999 plan.
To accommodate the developer's request for significant increases in square footage for retail and commercial space, as well as an increase in residential density, there are three major road changes proposed. Sections of NW 39th Avenue would be six-laned and NW 98th Street would proceed into the SpringHills and via a flyover bridge over I-75, join with the new extension of NW 83rd which will connect with Millhopper Road.
These changes will have a major impact on communities that surround the Meadowbrook Golf Club, Fort Clarke Middle School, St. Francis High School, and subdivisions along NW 39th Avenue near the I-75 exchange and along Millhopper Road.
Millhopper Road is a designated historic and scenic highway that fronts both the Devil's Millhopper State Park and the San Felasco Hammock Sate Park. According to a study, connecting Millhopper Road into the SpringHills development would mean an estimated increase of 2,000 vehicles per day flowing into the development; not counting vehicles that would use the road as a shortcut to get across town.
NW 39th Avenue is "failing at its service level" according to the county. SpringHills would add significantly to this problem. The developer's solution also includes dumping traffic onto sensitive Millhopper Road.
The County Commission is under no obligation to approve the amended plan. Please visit savemillhopperroad.org for a detailed map and in-depth information about the proposed project.

Kathy Ferguson,

Gainesville

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