The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), District Seven is conducting a Project Development and Environment (PD&E) study for I-275 (SR 93) from south of 54th Avenue South to north of 4th Street North, Pinellas County, Florida. The 16.3 mile study is analyzing the need for operational improvements for the corridor and evaluating the location, conceptual design, and social, economic, and environmental effects of any proposed improvements.
I-275 is a limited access urban interstate highway facility that runs in a north and south direction through Pinellas County. The posted speed limit is 65 miles per hour. Within the project limits, I-275 is a divided highway comprised of two travel lanes with one auxiliary lane in each direction from south of 54th Avenue South to I-375. From I-375 to north of 4th Street North, I-275 is a divided highway comprised of three travel lanes with one auxiliary lane in each direction. Due to a series of existing left-hand entrance and exit ramps, there are no continuous travel lanes on I-275 in the southbound direction and only one continuous travel lane in the northbound direction. In order to improve traffic flow on I-275, operational improvements are needed to increase the number of continuous lanes.
Study Purpose and Need
The purpose of this project is to provide for operational improvements that maximize capacity within the I-275 corridor, improve lane continuity, and connect I-275 within Pinellas County to the future network of express lanes planned for the Tampa Bay Region. Improvements are needed within the I-275 corridor to help improve existing traffic congestion, enhance safety, and better accommodate future travel demands associated with projected growth in employment and population. The addition of express lanes is included in the Pinellas County Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) 2040 Long Range Transportation Plan (LRTP).
I-275 is a vital link in the local and regional transportation network and serves as a critical evacuation route. As a major north-south corridor through Pinellas County, I-275 links the Tampa Bay Region with the remainder of the state and the nation supporting commerce, trade, and tourism. Preserving the operational integrity and regional functionality of I-275 is critical to the mobility and economy of the Tampa Bay Region.