Businesses remain open on U.S. 1 in Tequesta while roadwork on the year-long, $3 million construction project continues.
Completion of the two-mile stretch from the Martin County line south to Beach Road by J.W. Cheatham, LLC is scheduled for the fall of next year.
The construction is part of the Florida Department of Transportation’s “Complete Streets Program” to redesign roadways to become safer and encourage walking, bicycling and other driving alternatives, according to officials from the Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council.
The plan calls for eliminating the two U.S. 1 outside lanes — one north and one south — and replacing them with bicycle lanes and wider turn lanes. New sidewalks, lighting, marked crosswalks, landscaping and drainage are planned.
Two lanes of traffic in each direction will remain open during construction. Nighttime lane closures will be required for repaving.
Sidewalk sections occasionally will be closed. Detour routes for pedestrian routes will be marked, according to FDOT.
About 24,000 vehicles daily travel down the 2-mile section. That’s much lower than the maximum of 32,000 for a four-lane roadway. The maximum for a six-lane roadway is about 48,000, according to state transportation figures.
North county traffic woes won’t be over after the U.S. 1 project is complete.
Plans call for replacing the U.S. 1 bridge over the Loxahatchee River between Tequesta and Jupiter in 2021.
Construction of the higher, wider bridge, expected to cost about $120 million, is likely to take about three years.