By Tamas Mondovics
Hillsborough County traffic engineering officials recently approved the installation of a new signal to ease traffic flow in and out of Bloomingdale Square Plaza at 889 E. Bloomingdale Ave. in Brandon.
With the now infamously heavy traffic on Bloomingdale Avenue between Lithia Pinecrest Road and U.S. 301 as the norm—especially during rush hour, which officially renders the avenue a failed road—the installation of additional signals comes as no surprise for motorists routinely making use of the accident-prone, congested roadway.
According to Hillsborough County Transportation Program Manager and Traffic Engineer, Robert Campbell, installation of the new signal located at the second entrance to the plaza approximately 900 feet west of Bell Shoals Road in front of Chipotle Mexican Grill and Dunkin Doughnuts restaurants on the south and north side of Bloomingdale Avenue, respectively, is scheduled to begin this summer.
The private project is initiated, financed and organized by Bloomingdale Square Plaza owner and developer Regency Centers Corporation, a real estate investment trust based in Jacksonville. Regency Centers LP is one of the largest operators of grocery-anchored shopping centers.
Campbell emphasized that when operational, the new signal will be synchronized or “interconnected” with the now existing signals on Bloomingdale Avenue to optimize traffic flow.
“Safety is always our number one concern,” Campbell said, adding that with more traffic than it can handle, Bloomingdale Avenue is already a failed road at peak hours. “The signals on Bloomingdale Avenue will be retimed, while the new traffic signal will allow motorist and retail center patrons to enter and exit much safer.”
Boasting of more than three dozen stores, the Bloomingdale Square Plaza has seen some major changes in recent times including the closing of Walmart, which has anchored the shopping center since it opened nearly 30 years ago.
More recent additions to the plaza’s roster of stores and retailers includes Burger Monger, Title Boxing and Jeremiah’s Italian Ice, to name a few.
Construction of the new traffic signal is scheduled to take place at night and will include some lane closures, but officials said it will have minimal affect on day-time traffic. From start to finish, county engineers are estimating the duration of the project between four to six months. Visit bit.ly/29zXUAU.