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Longboat to fight FDOT data for Downtown roundabout

 

STEVE REID
Editor & Publisher
sreid@lbknews.com

The Longboat Key Town Commission agreed at its regular meeting last Tuesday to hire a consultant to analyze the data and conclusions that Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) used to justify a roundabout slated for U.S. 41 and Gulfstream Avenue in downtown Sarasota.

Longboat reiterated its concern that the roundabout may not be necessary and may not perform as well as the recently created triple left turn lanes that were installed last Spring as a temporary measure to help cars head north at the confluence of Gulfstream and U.S. 41.

It comes down to traffic and emergency evacuation and the town fears that FDOT is not giving enough time to evaluate the efficiency of the current traffic lights and wants to see how they work in the next busy season.

To that end, in addition to allocating up to $22,760 to review the roundabout modeling, the commission instructed Town Manager Tom Harmer to obtain the cost to hire the town’s traffic consultant, CDM Smith, to gather independent data during the busy season on how well the triple turn lanes actually function.

Harmer told Longboat Key News that he will likely return with that cost next month and should also have the results of the analysis by CDM Smith of the roundabout modeling done by FDOT.

“The big concern is we’ve seen a lot of improvement with the triple turn lane and we ought to evaluate with a full season of traffic, before proceeding,” said Harmer.

Harmer said that FDOT is aware of the town’s review and he said the agency welcomes another look at the data. If the data contradicts the FDOT’s, the town will likely ask FDOT to reopen its evaluation process.

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Longboat Key News

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