Bridging the West Tampa gap in Florida’s Gulf Coast Trail

Dale Mabry Highway is a significant obstacle to people on foot and bicycles, whether they are neighborhood residents trying to cross the street to get to shopping or bus stops, or whether they are long-distance cyclists wending their way from the Courtney Campbell Trail to the Downtown Riverwalk.

The MPO studied this problem both ways.  The Dale Mabry Pedestrian Overpass Technical Feasibility Analysis proposes a solution for the West Tampa trail gap that has been a challenge for completing the vision of the Florida Greenways and Trails Plan for a connected statewide trail system. A pedestrian bridge across Dale Mabry Highway is feasible along the south side of I-275, in right-of-way already owned by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) along the edge of a pond. On the west side, the overpass will connect to a greenway that was built earlier by FDOT. On the east side, a short gap still exists to connect with Tampa’s “Green Spine” cycle-track at Willow Ave. Way-finding signs for trail users, and connections to local sidewalks and parks, are also proposed.

The second part of the MPO’s study is the Spruce Street Improvements Technical Memorandum. Focused on the needs of West Tampa residents, it recommends walk/bike safety enhancements along Spruce Street and at Spruce Street’s intersections with major roads including Dale Mabry Highway.  Recommendations include marked and well‐defined crosswalks to help pedestrians to safely assert their right‐of‐way when crossing a street; roadway lighting especially at intersections; countdown pedestrian signals; and accessible pathways.

Please view each study and provide your comments to project manager Michele Ogilvie.

View the rest of this month's Connections to Tomorrow articles

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