As shown on this timeline, planning for the Tampa Bay interstate improvements began in the late 1980s and was approved in the late 1990s. The original plan always included additional lanes and a transit envelope. Right of way acquisition began in the late 1990s and FDOT has continued to implement the plan in phases as funding became available.
FDOT launches Tampa Bay Next
FDOT launches Tampa Bay Next to demonstrate its commitment to comprehensive, integrated transportation planning and development.
Downtown Interchange, Westshore Area Interstate and Westshore to Downtown Corridor SEIS
As part of the reset, FDOT is working with FHWA on a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) that reevaluates the social and environmental impacts of the Downtown Interchange, Westshore area interstate and Westshore to Downtown Corridor improvements using the most current data and design plans. With input and guidance from the Community Working Groups, we are also committed to developing and evaluating alternatives.
FDOT Secretary Jim Boxold announces a RESET for the Tampa Bay Express project
Realizing the community has demanded a more collaborative and transparent conversation about transportation both at the community level and the regional level, FDOT is taking the time to engage the community more effectively as we develop regional transportation solutions, and District 7 is committed to improving both the tone and content of the transportation conversation. FDOT is also further exploring the human impacts of our infrastructure projects. This reset is FDOT’s commitment to research, reevaluate, and respond.
For three years, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) increased community engagement activities in the Tampa Bay region by conducting focus groups, public workshops, small group presentations, speaker circuits, library tours, and other efforts. To supplement the Project Development & Environment (PD&E) re-evaluation, FDOT contracted with The University of South Florida’s Florida Center for Community Design and Research (FCCD+R) to conduct a targeted engagement series with communities adjacent to the project to better define community commitments and enhancements that should be included as part of the Tampa Bay Express project. This effort also provided the FDOT the opportunity to further develop the community’s vision and goals since the last project update.
Hillsborough Metropolitan Planning Organization Transportation Improvement Program Public Hearing
The Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) holds a public hearing every year to adopt the Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) for the upcoming Fiscal Year. The TIP is a five year plan that identifies, prioritizes and allocates funding for transportation projects. In 2016, MPO board members voted in favor of including the Tampa Bay Express into the TIP.
I-275 through West Tampa - Completed
The Florida Department of Transportation completed rebuilding and widening Interstate 275 from east of State Road 60 to the Hillsborough River in downtown Tampa. This project reconstructed all of the southbound interstate in that area, as well as northbound I-275 from east of State Road 60 to Himes Avenue. The project added a lane in each direction for four through-lanes in each direction. It improved sight distance and decreased the chances of accidents, improved interchanges to help move traffic on and off I-275, and added a wide median to decrease cost and public impact for future improvements to be built.
The I-4/Selmon Expressway Connector - Completed
The I-4/Selmon Expressway Connector was completed in 2014. This elevated north-south toll road, links the two major east-west corridors of I-4 and the Selmon Expressway and has significantly improved the movement of people and goods. The new roadway also provides exclusive truck lanes for direct access to Port Tampa Bay and has helped remove heavy truck traffic from local roads in Ybor City, one of only two National Historic Districts in Florida.
Northbound I-275 Improvement Project - Completed
Capacity and safety improvements to northbound I-275 from Himes Avenue to the Hillsborough River in Tampa were completed in 2010. The project reconstructed a 3-lane roadway into a 4-lane roadway. This realignment has improved traffic flow on southbound I-275 as traffic exiting to Howard/Armenia and Himes is taken off the interstate sooner. Improvements also included building 8-foot noise walls next to densely developed residential areas and design treatments that complement the historic neighborhood. http://www.mytbi.com/projects/projectinfo.asp?projectID=158&RoadID=1
Tampa Airport Interchange (SR 60) Interchange Improvements - Completed
In 2010, the Tampa Airport Interchange Project was completed improving the State Road 60/Memorial Highway from I-275 to the Courtney Campbell Parkway interchange near the Tampa International Airport. The Spruce Street/S.R. 60 interchange was improved to a four-level interchange and the Courtney Campbell/S.R. 60 interchange was improved to a three-level directional interchange. The project also included providing a two lane frontage road system for access to the Hyatt property. These improvements have helped reduce congestion on the interstate ramps within the area, improved access to Tampa International Airport and also improved appearance of the area through landscaping and aesthetic treatments.
I-4 through Ybor City - Completed
The reconstruction of I-4 from west of 14th Street to 50th Street in Tampa increased capacity and improved safety. This section of I-4 increased from a four-lane highway to an eight-lane highway (4 lanes in each direction) and tied into the Downtown Tampa Interchange. Improvements also included constructing eight-foot noise walls adjacent to densely developed residential areas and aesthetic design treatments that complement the historic neighborhood.
Improvements to the Downtown Interchange - Completed
Capacity and safety improvements to the Downtown Interchange (I-275/I-4) were completed in 2006. As a result of these operational improvements, eight new bridges were constructed, 18 existing bridges were widened, and four lanes in each direction now tie into four-lane projects on each side of this project. Other improvements include:
- Increased to 4-lanes in each direction
- The Ashley Drive entrance ramp was extended – continuing along I-275 to eastbound I-4
- The flyover ramp from southbound I-275 to eastbound I-4 was relocated from the left side to the right side of the highway to reduce weave movements
- Shoulder-mounted eight-foot noise walls were built adjacent to densely developed residential areas
- Landscaping was done in the infield area of the interchange and aesthetic treatments were incorporated into the design of underpass areas and street ends
Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) granted the Record of Decision (ROD) for the Tampa Interstate Study (TIS) Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS)
In January of 1997 the Federal Highway Administration granted the Record of Decision (ROD) for the Tampa Interstate Study (TIS) Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS). This document has governed the development of all improvements to I-275 and I-4 within the FEIS limits. The improvements that have been constructed to date are depicted in the TIS FEIS Long-Term Preferred Alternative provides for a roadway system that includes general use lanes and separated express lanes in each direction.
Approved Concept Provides for a Transit Corridor
FDOT has continually and consistently working on constructing the 1997 approved plan from the initial construction beginning in 2002 with the Downtown Interchange through the completion of the I-275 DB Project completed in 2016.
Florida Department of Transportation preparation of the Environmental Impact Statement - Began
In April 1990 the Florida Department of Transportation began preparation of the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and the supporting documentation necessary for state and federal approvals and subsequent funding of the plan’s concepts. The original TIS Master Plan and subsequent Major Investment Study (MIS), adopted by the Hillsborough County Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), FDOT, and the FHWA, provided the concept plans for approximately 37 miles of interstate improvements.
Federal Highway Administration approved the Tampa Interstate Study Master Plan Concept
The Tampa Interstate Study Master Plan concept was approved by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) in November 1989.
The Florida Department of Transportation began the development of the Tampa Interstate Study Master Plan
The objective of the Tampa Interstate Study (TIS) master plan was to identify alternatives and recommend a preferred type and location of multi-lane improvements, including express and general use lanes, a transit envelope, and transit facilities along with traffic management and other mobility improvements.
Tampa Interstate Study (TIS)
– Master Plan
Tampa Interstate Study (TIS)
– Environmental Documents
Tampa Interstate Study (TIS)
– Records of Decision (ROD)
Tampa Interstate Study (TIS)