Estero drivers push for I-75, Corkscrew Rd. interchange upgrade

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ESTERO, Fla.- Frustrations with a local road are growing, and now residents are taking action.

Drivers are lobbying the state for money to build a more efficient interchange at Corkscrew Road and I-75, claiming the current set-up is choking traffic during peak travel hours.

“I do get stuck in it. Any light is almost 6 minutes, instead of 3 minutes,” said Jay Wolf. “Lots of traffic. It has changed, you don’t go out for 15 minutes, you got out 45 minutes to an hour.”

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) has gotten 265 emails in the past two days, demanding top priority for Corkscrew Road improvements.

“It’s really bad, especially at rush hour in the evening. People trying to get on the interchange to go south,” said Don Eslick, with the Estero Council of Community Leaders.

FDOT says it’s already counting vehicles in the area, finding out where drivers come from and go to.

“There are certain times of the day when traffic does back up around the interchange,” said Zac Burch with FDOT. “We have to look and see when funding is available.”

Making improvements to the interchange could cost up to $73 million, but Estero says it’s necessary with 1,000 new homes being built in the village this year.

The current interchange dates back to 1981. Right now, FDOT says there’s no money for a new one, but in the next few years the traffic study may indicate a strong need.

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