Improvements in the works for State Road 29 amid recent crashes

Reporter: Gina Tomlinson
Published: Updated:
Photo by WINK News.

Drivers who frequent a dangerous stretch of road are hoping an expansion project could make it safer for them. Dark and dangerous is how drivers describe a corridor that also leads to a dangerous intersection, which has been a scene for fatal crashes.

Construction is underway to expand State Road 82, and Florida Department of Transportation is designing several projects aimed at making State Road 29 safer too.

“It would help if they widen it,” said. β€œMake it two lanes in each direction since all the accidents.”

Monday, a one person was injured in a rollover crash on SR 29. And a crash at the intersection of SR 82 and SR 29 left one man dead Saturday, and it put several people in the hospital.

“Twice a day, every day,” Brandon Thomas said. β€œMore accidents and people getting hurt.”

April Lofton from Immokalee is worried for the safety of her five kids because she takes the narrow two-lane stretch of the road to drop them off at school every day.

“It’s just ridiculous. You know? And I’m scared too for myself,” Lofton said. “It’s very busy, and everyone is rushing to get to work or rushing to get home.”

That’s why drivers want FDOT officials to speed up plans to make SR 29 safer. FDOT has started designing several projects to help ease traffic and prevent crashes along the corridor between Oil Well Road to the bridge in Labelle. The department is planning to widen the entire roadway to four lanes and add sidewalks along the side of SR 29.

β€œI think it should be sooner than later because of all these people who are dying,” Lofton said. β€œI think it’s mandatory.”

FDOT officials said it may take more than a year to complete the study and design phase for the traffic improvement projects. And it could be at least a couple of years before we see any construction on SR 29. In the meantime, FDOT is reminding drivers taking the heavily traveled route to drive carefully.

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