By Brian Bokor
Hillsborough County recently communicated plans to replace the bridge over Delaney Creek on 70th St. S. between Causeway Blvd. and 32nd Ave. S. in the Palm River-Clair Mel area of Tampa. These plans, as well as many other transportation projects, are made available for public review on the Hillsborough County Engagement Hub website at www.publicinput.com/hcengage.
A proposed 160-day road closure will be necessary for a section of 70th St. S. from Causeway Blvd. to 32nd Ave. S. in order to allow for the replacement of the bridge due to public safety issues. The $1.65M project is funded by the Community Investment Tax (CIT) bridge improvements program.
“The existing bridge was built in 1940 and is considered functionally obsolete with no sidewalks in either direction,” said Sandra Gonzalez, P.E., design manager for Hillsborough County’s Capital Programs Department. “In addition to having structural deficiencies, the bridge has no shoulders and is not striped, carrying a single travel lane in the north and south direction.”
Concrete traffic barriers, gutters, sidewalks and road shoulders will be added along with resurfacing the roadway. A continuous detour will be provided rerouting traffic to and from Causeway Blvd. and 32nd Ave. S. via 75th St. S. The proposed typical section will be a curb and gutter urban section with dedicated 11-foot lanes in each direction and 6-foot-wide sidewalks along each direction at the box culvert.
Project Manager Amanda Sotomayor added, “a continuous sidewalk will be provided on the west side of 70th St. S., connecting to the intersection with Causeway Blvd. to the north. The continuous sidewalk is only on one side of the road, the west side, as shown in the graphic. On the bridge, there will be sidewalks on both sides to provide any future sidewalk connection on the east side of the road if ever needed.”
The Hillsborough County Engagement Hub represents the online home for outreach and listening efforts that assist county leaders with decisions that impact the future of our community. On this site, results of previous surveys can be reviewed and residents are given the opportunity to share their input on projects in the works.
The purpose of these public engagement opportunities is to allow members of the public to review the information about the project and provide feedback during the two-week public comment period. In this specific case, the period ran from July 6 through July 20. Public participation is also made available to anyone wishing to speak before the board, with instructions on how to participate also available on the website.
The Board of County Commissioners will consider this closure request during the BOCC Regular Meeting on Wednesday, August 4.