Promoting passenger trains as a transportation alternative in Florida since 1983.  We are citizens who advocate for Amtrak, commuter rail, intercity rail and transit for Florida's future.

FDOT Proposal for Tampa Bay Express Highway "Lexus Lanes" Draws Ire

08 Nov 2015 5:04 PM | Jackson McQuigg (Administrator)

An FDOT proposal to widen Tampa-area Interstate highways for paid toll lanes is drawing negative reactions from the community. 

Called Tampa Bay Express, the new road proposal would widen large parts of Interstates 4 and 275. Neighborhoods in Tampa already impacted by earlier road projects like Ybor City and Tampa Heights would be further impacted. 

A group called Sunshine Citizens has formed to gather opposition to the Tampa Bay Express proposal. They have been spurred on by the recent announcement by CSX that it is willing to sell some of its lines in the Tampa Bay area for commuter rail.

As it turns out, Florida's many toll roads have not always helped the congestion issues the state has faced on its roads, according to this commentary from the Tampa Tribune.

Opposition to Tampa Bay Express has also recently come from Tampa itself. The Tampa City Council recently voted against the project.

This is quickly turning into a rails vs. roads argument in an area of the state which has not yet embraced commuter rail. 

Certainly FCRP believes that spending billions on more roadways are not the answer to Florida's transportation problems. What hasn't worked in the past will not work in the future.

--Jackson McQuigg

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