A public hearing was held on August 19, 1993 and a transcript is included with the environmental determination. Approval of this Type 2 Categorical Exclusion determination constitutes acceptance of the location and design concepts for this project.
The existing typical section from Kennedy Boulevard to I-275 is urban and consists of three, 3A-meter (12-foot) lanes in each direction of travel. A 4.9-meter (16-foot) raised median separates opposing travel lanes. A 1.5-meter (five-foot) sidewalk is provided along both sides of the roadway separated from the back of curb by a 0.6-meter (two-foot) grassed strip.
Study Purpose and Need
The proposed project will involve the widening of the roadway along the existing alignment. Surrounding neighborhoods will not be affected. Travel patterns and access will remain unchanged. The provision of continuous sidewalks throughout the project limits and pedestrian features may enhance community cohesion.
The preferred alternative will have three, 3.7-meter (12-foot) lanes for each direction of travel. Opposing lanes will be separated by a 4.9-meter (16-foot) raised median. The median width would be adequate for the storage of vehicles crossing the median. Sidewalks 1.5 meters (five feet) in width will be provided along both sides of the roadway separated from the curb by a 0.6-meter (two-foot) grassed strip. A 1.5-meter (five-foot) landscape buffer would be provided at the back of the sidewalk. This typical section would require an additional 3.4 meters (11 feet) of right-of-way along the mainline south of Cypress Street and an additional 4.9 meters (16 feet) of right-of-way along the mainline north of Cypress Street. Additional right-of-way for intersection improvements will also be necessary. The proposed improvements would be developed with an alignment shift to the west south of Cypress Street and an alignment shift to the west nort of Cypress Street.
No bicycle facilities would be provided under the preferred alternative. The Department, in coordination with the staffs of the City of Tampa and Hillsborough County, reached a decision internally that bicycle facilities are not suitable for this corridor. Issues of concern in providing bicycle facilities on this roadway includes the safely of the bicyclist due to numerous driveway openings, high traffic volumes, and the availability to use Trask Street and other parallel facilities to access properties along Westshore Boulevard. The decision not to provide bicycle facilities was supported by the Westshore Alliance and the Hillsborough County Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO). There is a detailed discussion of this issue in the Preliminary Engineering Report in Sections 8.1.2, 8.1.3. 8.10.2, and throughout Section 9.