A new toll road in the Pinellas Gateway area is already being built and is set to open in 2022. Executive Director of Forward Pinellas', the county's transportation agency, says it's "probably the most significant transportation project we've had in the county for years". The construction that is currently taking place along 118th Avenue around the St Pete-Clearwater International Airport will last a couple of years and will include 2 elevated roadways.
According to an airport spokesperson, Michele Routh, the change should eliminate backups at the entrance and exit of the airport.
The biggest impact the plan will have in the immediate future will be the relocation of the airport's entrance from its current spot on Roosevelt Boulevard, to a quarter mile south where a new traffic light and signs to direct commuters will be installed. The new entrance could be up and running as soon as this morning, but no later than Monday if rains delay workers, according to Tampa Bay Times.
The road coined The Gateway Expressway should relieve congestion during peak traffic hours. The new toll roads will provide an option for those willing to pay, to get around crowded corridors near 118 Avenue, Ulmerton and Roosevelt. Ultimately the new roadways will provide express connections from US 19 to I-275 and from the Bayside Bridge to I-275, according to the FDOT.
This project originally spawned as the Tampa Bay Express in 2016, but was construction was severely slowed down due to an uproar from the community.
A video provided by the FDOT shows how the project will affect commuters in the coming years.
-Marc Charles for Money Talk 1010AM