Massive Road Work Coming

Here is the forum you will find lots of information, photos and discussion about the Navarre Mainland, Navarre Town Center, Heart of Navarre and Santa Rosa County. Areas included are Gulf Breeze, Pace, Milton and other communities in Santa Rosa County.

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PensacolaKid
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Mon Jun 24, 2013 10:05 am

While down Navarre way last week, a good friend told me that 98 is about to start a program of re-paving the road from....hold your seat.....basically Gulf Breeze to the Okaloosa Island Bridge. That means, closing one lane east and one lane west. In other words, you think the traffic is bad now, oh.....just wait. One would think the state/county would wait until the summer season is over but NOOOOOOOOO. They are about to start the process, I believe in July and it is supposed to go for months. Whatever happened to common sense in this country?
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Recce
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Mon Jun 24, 2013 11:03 am

Do you think people will use hwy 399 more? I will have to say the scenery on that stretch of hwy between Navarre and Gulf Breeze is breathtaking!
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PensacolaKid
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Mon Jun 24, 2013 11:14 am

Reece,

I don't believe so because much of that portion of the road is 15-20 mph. That is very very slow and in fact, I believe a bit too slow. 20-25 yes. 15...NO! Can you imagine the back up on 399 with that kind of speed limit.

What I think will happen is it will work itself out and people had better be prepared to leave early to work and leave early or late back home. This is going to be a nightmare.
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dolfnfan
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Mon Jun 24, 2013 12:50 pm

Months? Ohhhh, P'Kid you don't know the worst part. According to the 6/13 issue of Navarre Press it is scheduled to take 2 YEARS. For an 11-mile stretch. Mind-numbing, isn't it? I did the math: If they work 5 days a week that works out to a blazing 100 feet per day. So in an entire day's work, they'll be repaving 1/3 the length of a football field.

In the 6/20 issue of Navarre Press it's stated the the work is scheduled to be completed in 1.5 years. Regardless, it's a ludicrously long time to resurface a measley 11-mile stretch.
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PensacolaKid
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Mon Jun 24, 2013 1:57 pm

You are correct Dolfnfan. Can you imagine what this is going to do?

While on this subject and I know that the Santa Rosa County officials and frankly the panhandle moves at a slower pace than say a Dallas, Houston or Chicago but can anyone explain to me, why it has taken literally years to widen and pave 87 going north? I know for a fact it has been 2 years and maybe longer. For such a relatively small project? Money? Manpower? I personally think it is ridiculous to take that long.
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PensacolaKid
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Mon Jun 24, 2013 1:59 pm

What is the world will people do during the mid summer and midday hours and rush hours for that matter. Can you imagine the tie up's and then add the lights to this equation? I would like to know who the fool was that said...."you know what, let's start during the prime summer tourist season!"

It is going to take hours to get anywhere and I suspect people will not tolerate that and will seek another spot next year....Destin or PBeach and bypass all that.
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EastBayBabe
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Mon Jun 24, 2013 2:05 pm

The signs say that the work will start on June 13, but I don't see any work being done, yet. I also heard that the work would be done at night to avoid all the traffic jams. So maybe that's the reason that it's going to take so long. I agree that the timing could have been considered a bit better, what with the heat and the tourists during the day.
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RoBear
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Mon Jun 24, 2013 5:33 pm

To the Okaloosa Island Bridge?? They have already repaved much of 98 in the western portions of Okaloosa County. I also doubt they would repave when they are getting ready to build a fly over at Hurlburt Field. That is estimated to ast a few years as well. I can tell you when they repaved in Okaloosa Co, they did a majority of the work at night and I didn't see a lot of traffic snarles.
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AngelGirl
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Mon Jun 24, 2013 5:37 pm

What you describe is what we experienced with the repaving of the Hwy 90 bridge at Pace a few years ago. For those new to the area, Hwy 90 is the major artery between Milton and Pensacola. Most of the work was done at night with minimal problems ... even during rush hour! They certainly improved the drive, too. Was really nice and smooth when they finished.

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dolfnfan
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Tue Jun 25, 2013 8:39 am

RoBear wrote:To the Okaloosa Island Bridge??
No, just to the Santa Rosa/Okaloosa line...100 feet at a time! :lol:
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PensacolaKid
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Tue Jun 25, 2013 8:48 am

I believe it is quite obvious that Hwy 98 is a problem in many respects. Do you feel it is beyond time that the State consider a major overhaul and not just a re-paving. My initial thought is take out the grassy median and create another two lanes from that and include widening the existing lanes. Have exit ramps or turnarounds and times lights with camera's that can detect traffic or not to avoid idling when unnecessary.
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dolfnfan
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Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:10 am

Well now you're asking an awful lot, P'kid! All your observations are intelligent, logical and spot on...so it's very unlikely that any of them will happen in our lifetime.

Something dramatic needs to be done with the Navarre Causeway too. It's beyond ridiculous and that situation is untenable. 45 minutes to leave the island on a regular ol' summer weekend day? It used to only be that bad on holiday weekends. The bright side is that this will absolutely keep a lot of people away so it shouldn't get too much worse. People will only tolerate so much before they just move on to the next beach down the highway...
Sleep late, drive fast and don't take anything seriously...
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Kenny Wilder
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Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:38 am

About 99% of the problem on US Highway 98 is that the folks are driving way over the speed limit. They think that they are in a NASCAR race.
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PensacolaKid
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Tue Jun 25, 2013 10:40 am

You are right Dolfnfan. You are also correct Kenny. The speeding that I witness while down there is stupid and dangerous.

One does have to wonder though, what is it going to take for the powers to be to understand that something needs to be done, a new plan, a new strategy. If the industry level were to pick up in the Panhandle by whatever means and an influx of new residents came in, 98 would be even more overwhelmed.
RoBear
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Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:18 am

98 is a nightmare to be sure. There is no way to really widen the lanes. You would have no shoulder or turn lanes. There are already a lot of accidents WITH the turn lanes. If you take out the median, then you wold have to put up a small wall or barrier. And you could not make any turn lanes, or turn around points.
The biggest problem on 98 is not so much the speed of the drivers, per sey, but that everyone seems to drive with their head up their backside. I can wait 10 min in the morning waiting to merge onto 98 because everyone is in the left hand lane. The right hand lane will be wide open most of the times too! Most do it because they have to make a left hand turn MILES up the road. And then you get the tourists...and old folks. Add to that, there is no where to go if/when a wreck jams up traffic. (and aggresive ticketing doesn't really help either. $163 for careless driving ticket. Typicaly what you'll get when you do something stupid and cause a crash.)
In Okaloosa Co, our biggest problem on 98 is Hurlburt Field. There are actually MORE people coming onto Hurlburt each day that Eglin, believe it or not. They are building a flyover at the main gate to try and help the snarles, but I suspect it will move the roadblock down the road a bit.
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