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EDGEWOOD EXTENSION OPENS SEPTEMBER 21ST - EAST/WEST CONNECTOR

EDGEWOOD EXTENSION OPENS SEPTEMBER 21ST

EAST/WEST CONNECTOR

LAKELAND, FL (September 13, 2012) – The much anticipated Edgewood Extension that connects South Florida Avenue to Harden Boulevard will officially open on Friday, September 21, 2012 during a 9 a.m. ceremony that will take place at the intersection of Lincoln Avenue and the Edgewood Extension.

The public is invited to help celebrate the new roadway with a motorcade ribbon cutting after the official removal of the barricades.  Those wishing to participate are invited to enter the Edgewood Extension roadway at Harden Boulevard and travel east toward Lincoln Avenue.  There will be traffic attendants to guide participants to the right place.  The ribbon breaking motorcade will include vehicles from the Lakeland Police Department, Lakeland Fire Department, Lakeland Electric, Lakeland Water/Waste Water, Solid Waste, the Citrus Connection and those who would like to be part of the festivities.

Mayor Gow Fields said, “We have been exploring options for an east/west connector for a long time and we are very glad to have this important transportation project completed.” He added, “The new road will relieve congestion, ultimately improving transportation service including quicker police/fire/EMS response times.”

The Southwest Middle School Jazz Band will play as the motorcade heads toward South Florida Avenue and students from Southwest Middle School will cheer, officially opening the road for vehicle traffic.  The eastbound lane will open first with road workers removing all barricades in that direction followed by removal of the barricades in the west bound lanes.

The Edgewood Extension roadway project started January 1, 2012 and it will open ahead of schedule.  An east/west connector has been in the works since 2001 when the City of Lakeland had its first initial workshop on possible routes.  The total cost for the project was $19.2 million with funding coming from Polk County, the Federal Highway Administration, City of Lakeland impact fees and City of Lakeland bond revenues. The Edgewood Extension is expected to experience over 16,000 cars per day. 

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