Hillsborough County officials met with residents at Bloomingdale High School last month to share details of the much-anticipated widening of Bell Shoals Rd.
According to Hillsborough County Senior Media Relations Strategist Chris Wilkerson, construction on the road is expected to begin this month.
“The proposed changes include replacing a two-lane undivided rural road to a four-lane divided urban roadway,” said Wilkerson, who explained that the construction will take place from Boyette Rd. to Bloomingdale Ave. over approximately two years.
In addition to the widening, improvements, including a bike lane and sidewalk in each direction of the 3.1-mile stretch, will occur during the construction phase. A new signal will be installed at Starwood Ave. and signals at Glenhaven Dr., Rosemead Dr. and Bloomingdale Ave. are scheduled for upgrades. According to county representatives, the road will never be entirely closed during the project.
Residents at the meeting were informed that David Nelson Construction Co. was awarded the contract for the construction. According to its website, David Nelson Construction Co. is a general contractor specializing in commercial buildings, heavy highway construction, site work and underground utilities. The company has 40 years of construction experience and an annual volume of $45,000,000.
Drivers may have noticed changes on the road over the last year as workers relocated private utilities to make room for the road expansion.
The bridge over the Alafia River on Bell Shoals Rd., just north of the FishHawk Blvd. and Boyette Rd. intersection, will also be widened during the project.
“The bridge work will begin in January or February of 2020 and will be completed within 18 to 24 months following,” said Wilkerson.
According to county representatives, funding for the $65 million Capital Improvement Project comes from several sources, including approximately $8 million from the Community Local Gas Tax, $27 million from the Community Investment Tax, $4 million from the Public Utilities Relocation Fund, $10 million from the general and other reserve funds and $16 million from developers Newland Communities.