Bee Ridge Widening - a few updates
One of Sarasota County's project managers for the Bee Ridge Road widening provided some updates on that project at Friday's meeting of the Bee Ridge Neighborhood Committee.
State to put in Sidewalk
In a surprise move, the state plans to build a sidewalk on the South side of Bee Ridge from Cattlemen to where the state's portion of Bee Ridge ends -- near the exit ramp from I-75. This project was moved up -- originally it was not expected to happen before 2018, but with this funding, it might be completed before the end of this year. This is great news for those who have had to walk along the roadway, or in the weeds, to get to businesses West of the highway.
|State's portion of Bee Ridge begins at the dark area |
marked with the yellow pointer.
The Committee also got an update on Landscaping plans for Bee Ridge:
East of Mauna Loa, the County intends to put in a row of trees on the north side of Bee Ridge, another row in the median that will begin just east of the intersection, and more trees and vegetation along the south side of Bee Ridge. Racetrac, which intends to put in a very large gas station on the northeast corner of Bee Ridge and Mauna Loa Blvd., will also be required to put in landscaping, including bushes and trees. The net result: when the trees and bushes grow out, there should be a natural buffer helping shield Lake Sarasota from the lights, exhaust, and noise from the highly trafficked station that will be open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
A selection of grasses, shrubs and trees has been made that will be planted along the sides of the widened road, as well as in the medians and roundabouts. According to the current plan, the only portion of Bee Ridge that will have a wrought iron fence is 1,000 feet along the south side from Eton to Coleridge. It was deemed too costly to have a more extensive fence.
Photos of the road plan, the median, and the selection of plants can be seen by clicking on the image below:
|Bee Ridge Landscaping plans as of May 3, 2013|
When complete, the widened Bee Ridge Rd. will have seven lanes wide at the intersection of Mauna Loa Blvd. Going East, two lanes will be left turns at the light, two will continue straight east, and one will be a right turn into Lake Sarasota. West of the intersection, the north side of Bee Ridge Rd. will indent to provide a bus bay:
|Bee Ridge Rd. and Mauna Loa Blvd., West side|
Heading West, one lane will turn right into Mauna Loa Blvd. North, two lanes will continue straight, and one lane will be a left turn only into Lake Sarasota. East of the intersection, the south side of the road will indent for a Bus Bay:
|Bee Ridge at Mauna Loa, East side|
Construction for the road widening is expected to begin towards the end of this year.
If you have questions or comments, please leave them in the comments area below, or send them to firstname.lastname@example.org -- we'll pass them along to the project managers. For the record, the managers of the Bee Ridge Road have maintained a high level of cooperation and communication with the neighborhoods along Bee Ridge Rd.