The Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA) Project Development and Environment (PD&E) Studies
The Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA) has been conducting four Project Development and Environment (PD&E) studies to evaluate the best way that our agency can be a part of improving mobility in the Tampa Bay region and provide transportation solutions to accommodate the population growth. Working with community partners like the City of Tampa, SPP, HART, and others, the information gathered from the PD&E studies informs how the transportation network can best plan for the future.
A PD&E study evaluates social, economic, and environmental effects connected with the suggested transportation improvements so that the FDOT (Florida Department of Transportation) can make a conclusion on the type, location, and theoretical design in order to fully meet the project’s needs. The study must meet state requirements and be signed by the FDOT in order to proceed in the process.
Here is a list of our four PD&E Studies:
Whiting Street PD&E Study
The Whiting Street Project Development and Environment (PD&E) Study is evaluating ways to connect Whiting Street to Meridian Avenue to improve the grid network in eastern downtown Tampa. We are also looking at ways to improve operations and safety for Whiting Street between Jefferson Street and Brush Street, the Jefferson Street entrance ramp, and the downtown Tampa eastbound exit ramps. The potential improvements will enhance safety and community connections in downtown Tampa. Join us on February 22, 2022, for the Whiting Street PD&E Public Hearing. The hearing time, location, and more information about being a part of the public record can be found at https://whitingstreetpde.com/.
- Improvement Location A: Whiting Street from Meridian Avenue to Brush Street
- Improvement Location B: Whiting Street from Brush Street to Jefferson Street and the Intersection at the end of the new Whiting Street Exit Ramp
- Improvement Location C: Jefferson Street Entrance Ramp and the new Whiting Street Exit Ramp
- Improvement Location D: Removal of Exit Ramp 6B and Reconstruction of Exit Ramp 6A
Presentation of the Preferred Alternative will be at the Whiting Street PD&E public hearing. Public comments will be accepted until March 8th.
East Selmon PD&E Study
The East Selmon PD&E Study limits extend approximately 10 miles from Brorein Street in downtown Tampa to I-75 near Brandon. Roadway and ramp improvements will be evaluated to address the safety, efficiency, and capacity needs of the Selmon Expressway general lanes and reversible express lanes through the year 2045. It is anticipated that the improvements will primarily be within the existing right-of-way.
The East Selmon PD&E Study began in spring 2020 and is anticipated to be completed by spring 2022. In addition to the public meeting and public hearing, a continuous community outreach process is integrated into every step of the study to ensure that the corridor residents, businesses, traveling public, and other interested parties can have meaningful participation in the process. To stay up to date on the study updates and public alternatives meetings, please register for our newsletter at https://selmonstudies.com/.
During the research phase of the East Selmon PD&E, THEA found that two new slip ramps would be an opportunity to improve near-term service levels for drivers on the Selmon Expressway. Slip ramps are internal ramps within the Expressway, similar to the ingress/egress from the Expressway to the Reversible Express Lanes (REL). Construction of the East Selmon Slip Ramps will allow drivers to continue on the REL south of downtown Tampa. THEA believes the construction of the new REL Slip ramps will help reduce cut-through traffic in downtown Tampa as well as Bayshore Boulevard. Full construction on these two ramps began at the end of January 2022.
Nebraska PD&E Study
The Nebraska PD&E Study’s primary focus is to identify needs, test alternatives, and develop recommendations to alleviate congestion and more efficiently distribute traffic as it enters downtown after exiting the REL system. Several study intersections will be analyzed in this study for potential improvements. The study will ultimately recommend a Preferred Alternative configuration of travel lanes, turn lanes, and intersections, as well as an implementation plan for feasible traffic management strategies. Right-of-way (ROW) impacts for this project will be minimized as much as possible.
Why is the study needed?
- Improve Travel Times
- Reduce Traffic Congestion
- Improve Safety
- Enhance Regional Mobility
- Accommodate Future Travel Demand
The Meridian Ultimate Nebraska Avenue Improvements PD&E Study began in the third quarter of 2020 and is anticipated to be completed in the second quarter of 2022. Stay connected by joining our mailing list at selmonstudies.com.
South Selmon PD&E Study
The PD&E Study process includes four steps: Developing Alternatives, Screening Alternatives, Refining Options for Additional Evaluation, and finally, selecting a Preferred Alternative. The Preferred Alternative for the South Selmon has been accepted and will be moving forward as a design-build. Traffic on the Selmon Expressway has almost doubled in the past ten years, requiring the need for additional lanes of service. THEA has listened to the residents along the South Selmon Expressway and has committed to building noise walls along the full length of this area, even where not required by the study.
Construction updates will be ongoing throughout the upcoming project. To stay connected, register for the newsletter at selmonstudies.com and/or follow THEA on Facebook and Twitter.