Ernie Taylor: Another costly county commission road project


Published: Tuesday, January 25, 2011 at 10:29 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, January 25, 2011 at 10:29 a.m.

The cadre of Commissioners Byerly, DeLaney and Long continue on with their expensive road projects as they pursue their own, and special interest, transportation agenda. The latest example is the 16th/23rd Avenue project. In its design, they are adding a 10-foot wide multi-use path, a 3-foot paved shoulder for bike traffic, and reducing the existing two roadway travel lanes from 12-feet to 11- and 10-feet.

The price tag for these changes is over a million dollars. The 10-foot multi-use path (if including bikers) makes some sense as it would meet FDOT design standards for this corridor of minimal bike traffic. Reducing travel lanes to less than 11-feet to accommodate a 3-foot paved shoulder for bikers does not meet the FDOT minimum standards. Ten foot lanes are too narrow for this busy roadway and FDOT requires a minimum of 5 feet for a one-directional bike lane. More importantly, it does not meet a "good common sense" standard. With over 22,000 vehicle trips a day squeezing bikers against a 3 foot shoulder, I would guess many of you would give pause at this high risk venture.

There is one saving grace. If they had more right of way to work with (aka Tower Road) we might be looking at 9 roundabouts and enough pavement for bikers and pedestrians to construct "two" parallel 14 foot wide interstate lanes at an obscene cost of $30 million taxpayer dollars. While this project is an example of pushing their agenda no matter the cost, the 16th/24 Avenue project is an example how far they will go outside the limits of good common sense.

Ernie Taylor,

Gainesville

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