CLEARWATER — Forward Pinellas board members said yes Jan. 9 to a tentative five-year work program proposed by Florida Department of Transportation for fiscal years 2020-2024.
The five-year work program is FDOT’s proposal for transportation improvements and includes planning activities, preliminary engineering, right of way acquisition, construction and public transportation projects.
The program includes public transit, seaport, airport and rail projects planned throughout District 7, which includes Citrus, Hernando, Pasco, Pinellas and Hillsborough counties.
The current adopted program covers FY 2019-2023. It was adopted July 1, 2018, the start of the state’s 2019 fiscal year. The new tentative work program will be reviewed by the Florida Legislature and the Governor and, if satisfactory, will be adopted by the state secretary of transportation on July 1, 2019.
Stephen Benson, FDOT’s metropolitan planning administrator for District 7, presented Forward Pinellas with information about changes to the tentative program as it pertains to Pinellas.
He said the first year of the program is included in the state’s proposed budget, pending approval. Subsequent years are commitments for production and budget planning. The program includes FDOT managed projects and locally managed projects that have FDOT involvement.
The current work program ends June 30 and at that time, year two projects will become the current year. In addition, a new fifth year will be added, and funding will be allocated for the next phase of projects based on FDOT’s goals, statewide programs and local priorities.
Benson presented an update on proposed new projects in Pinellas, as well as changes to existing plans, including project development, preliminary engineering and design, right of way acquisition and construction.
The list of new projects and phases includes more than a dozen roadway projects, seven pedestrian-bicycle projects, one transit project and five planning projects.
Total funding for District 7’s work program is $2 billion over five years. Funding includes: $6.5 million for MPO planning; $110 million for transit; $42.6 for aviation; $3 million for seaport; $1.6 million to improve roadway capacity; $55.7 million for resurfacing; $16.1 for Complete Streets projects; $17.5 million for traffic operations; $7.9 million for bicycle-pedestrian improvements; and $6.7 million for intelligent transportation systems.
For more information on the work program, visit www.d7wpph.com.