Governor Rick Scott visited the SWIFT Sunguide Center at the I-75/SR 78 Interchange with Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) Secretary Ananth Prasad and FDOT District 1 Secretary Billy Hattaway, and elected officials to highlight Department of Transportation projects along I-75 as part of the Florida Families First Budget.
Governor Scott said, “The I-75 Corridor is the backbone of transportation along the west coast of Florida; it is essential to statewide mobility and our economic competiveness. In order to preserve this vital segment of I-75, our Florida Families First Budget calls for an $80 million investment to expand a 1.6 mile stretch of highway and bridges adding six travel lanes. This project will not only save taxpayer money through a private-public partnership, but it will also create jobs for Florida families and increase safety for those who travel on our roads.”
The Governor’s budget also proposes a $58 million project to add lanes and reconstruct US 41 from State Road 951 to Greenway Road in Collier County to ease traffic congestion and a $2 million project to widen and resurface existing lanes on State Road 84 to allow space for landscaping, bike lanes, lighting and sidewalks, according to Lane Wright, spokesperson for the Office of Gov. Rick Scott.
FDOT Secretary Ananth Prasad said, “The improvements to the I-75 corridor will enhance the movement of freight, improve trade and create good jobs in the region. I applaud Governor Scott’s continued focus on funding strategic transportation investments which strengthens our economy and lowers the cost of living for Florida’s families.”
FDOT District One Secretary Billy Hattaway added, “The I-75 projects truly are an investment that will greatly benefit the citizens and businesses of southwest Florida. These projects will not only add jobs but keep people working, who in turn support local businesses and boost our economy.”
The Florida Families First budget recommended $9.1 billion for the Florida Department of Transportation in the 2013-2014 year – an 11 percent increase over the prior year. The recommendations will supply the retention and creation of an estimated 505,000 jobs, one third of which will be directly related to highway construction employment, according to Wright.