A new Interstate 4 construction project is starting this week, but it shouldn’t bring any more congestion than usual. The 11-mile stretch from east of 50th Street to east of McIntosh Road will be completely repaved between now and summer 2020.
There are parts of I-4 where the asphalt is deteriorating and several layers will have to be removed and replaced.
John McShaffrey of the Florida Department of Transportation said he doesn’t think there’s a single person who says this work doesn’t need to be done.
“Overall, you’ll see when you drive the corridor, there’s a clear need that it needs to be resurfaced.”
McShaffrey said for District 7, this stretch of I-4 is most in need of work because the road has had an extensive amount of deterioration.
“I think people that drive it regularly know it’s a much-needed project,” he said. “They’ll be very happy that we’ll get it resurfaced by the time we get it all done, because it will be a much smoother ride.”
All work involving travel lanes and ramps will be done at night between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m. McShaffrey said the construction should not affect traffic during normal commuting time or rush hour, but there will be some impact if people are driving during the overnight hours.
There are about 40 entrance and exit ramps on the 11-mile stretch, each one will also need to be resurfaced. Because most are single-lane, when the ramps are being worked on, motorists will have to take detours. The redirections will be sign-posted, and motorists will be informed several days before closures.
At the same time as the repaving, FDOT is also working on lengthening the ramps that connect I-4 and Interstate 75. McShaffrey said this will give motorists more room to merge, making the whole process smoother.
The resurfacing project started Monday, but drivers shouldn’t see any lane closures until the end of the week. It should be completed in summer 2020.
FDOT will update its website with road closure and detour information.