FDOT Provides Feedback for Monroe County’s Transportation Master Plan

MONROE COUNTY, FL – The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) provided feedback on Monroe County’s U.S. 1 Transportation Master Plan (TMP) priority list delivered in April 2022.

“It is impressive to see how quickly the FDOT took our community’s recommendations and prioritized them,” said Monroe County Mayor David Rice, who has been a strong voice on transportation issues throughout the Florida Keys for the past several years. “FDOT is continuing to evaluate and provide feedback on our recommendations.”

The list of current priority projects from the overall U.S.1 Transportation Master Plan was created through a collaboration between Monroe County and each municipality. It was then prioritized by the Florida Keys Transportation Coordination Committee (FKTCC), and moved forward to FDOT through a resolution by the Monroe County Board of County Commissioners.

“It is gratifying to see the results of the collaboration between the community’s input, County, cities, and FKTCC move forward successfully,” said Monroe County’s Transit and Mobility Coordinator and Strategic Planning Director, Kimberly Matthews.

The feedback includes FDOT’s support for certain projects to move forward through the County’s Transportation Planning Program (funded through a Joint Participation Agreement with FDOT) to define the necessary scope(s) of work, and indications that FDOT has already begun, or is preparing to begin, work on other projects in the County’s priority list.

A number of projects in the County’s priority recommendation list are ready for scopes of work to be developed in preparation of hiring a consultant to proceed with the necessary studies. They include:

  • TMP #130- Conduct a study to determine potential intersection improvements at U.S. 1 and CR 905, including bike lane continuity through the intersection.
  • TMP #162- Conduct a study to determine the feasibility of adding bus stops, improving bus stop amenities such as shelters, Wi-Fi, bike racks, seating, lighting, driver notification push buttons, etc. along U.S. 1 Keyswide. Specifically within Islamorada, install shelters at designated bus pull-off areas and stops along U.S. 1. Funding for installation of bus stop shelters is included in Islamorada’s FY 21-22 budget.
  • TMP #24, 65, 88, 108, & 131 – Conduct studies to evaluate the feasibility of park and ride hubs, fixed route circulators, micro-transit, bike-sharing, and/or scooter-sharing services to provide first/last mile connections to complement public transit in Key Largo, Islamorada, Marathon, Big Pine Key, and Stock Island. Islamorada is in the process of purchasing the Walgreens property and has budgeted funds to convert the property to a parking area to create a park and ride hub parking area and a base for potentially expanded Freebee services.
  • TMP #125- Review and identify potential pedestrian and bicycle signage and pavement marking improvements, including markings and signage for the merge and turn lanes to improve vehicular traffic flow along U.S. 1 at approximate mile marker 99.5-100 in Key Largo.
  • TMP #155- Conduct a detailed study to evaluate the feasibility of a water ferry service from Miami to Key West.
  • TMP #166- Develop a Mobility On-Demand Application to assist users with trip planning and mobility options along U.S. 1.

There are four projects in the County’s priority recommendation list that FDOT indicates they are currently pursuing or preparing to do:

  • TMP #158- Conduct a study to evaluate the feasibility of implementing active traffic management strategies in conjunction with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO); extend Road Ranger Services (if amenable to MCSO) into Monroe County with the potential of having a pilot program focusing on high crash locations; explore the use of different strategies like artificial intelligence. Implement a weigh-in-motion technology upgrade instead of a weigh station relocation for Snake Creek Bridge station.
  • TMP #104- Conduct a study along U. S. 1 for the length of Islamorada to determine the need for turn lanes and/or other access management improvements. Also, review the possibility of improvements to the Old Highway to better serve as a frontage road that promotes safety and other modes of transportation by installing bike lanes and walking paths.
  • TMP #113- Convert Snake Creek Bridge to a high-level fixed bridge. Prioritize the bridge replacement evaluation, which is currently scheduled for a PD&E study in FY 2026.
  • TMP #77- Review and identify potential pedestrian/bicycle signing and pavement marking improvements along U.S. 1 in the vicinity of the signalized intersections in Marathon. Conduct a study to evaluate the feasibility of adding a crosswalk to the Coco Plum/U.S. 1 intersection. Conduct a feasibility study to create and install walkover or pedestrian bridges in Marathon. Conduct a traffic pattern study to evaluate changing the crosswalk at Sadowski Causeway/U.S. 1 from the west to the east side of the intersection with an emphasis on improving pedestrian and bicycle safety.

“Florida Keys residents are dependent on safe access and travel along U.S. 1,” said Monroe County Senior Director of Planning and Environmental Resources, Emily Schemper. “There are segments of U.S. 1 that perform poorly when it comes to safe and efficient traffic flow. FDOT recognizes this issue, and with the implementation of some of these projects, we will start to see real results there and throughout the Florida Keys.”

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