State officials to discuss U.S. Highway 41 improvements

State highway officials will be on campus Tuesday, Oct. 2 to gather citizens’ opinions and discuss options to improve traffic flow and safety along the section of U.S. Highway 41 that runs through New College.

Representatives from the Florida Department of Transportation will be in the lobby of Heiser Natural Sciences Complex beginning at 3:30 p.m. for an open house forum lasting about 2 hours. Displays and tables with information and handouts will be available.

The FDOT is conducting a corridor planning study for the section of highway from University Parkway north to Whitfield Avenue. According to the website set up for this project, the study is “evaluating existing multimodal corridor needs, existing and future regional travel needs, safety improvements, and the community vision and desires for this portion of the U.S. 41/Tamiami Trail Scenic Highway.”

On the website, the state discusses a range of possible solutions, including adding turn lanes at several intersections, creating roundabouts and adding bike lanes in an effort to improve safety, access and mobility through the corridor.

Among the stated project goals is to “Improve multimodal connections throughout the corridor, with an emphasis between University of South Florida, Sarasota-Manatee and New College.”

According to the FDOT website, New College of Florida’s Master Plan is committed to reducing vehicle use by promoting transit use, promoting a ‘park once’ environment, promoting walking and biking as primary connection to the USFSM campus, and promoting more pedestrian – and public transportation-friendly links between the campus and adjacent neighborhoods.

The USFSM master plan also supports the construction of a public trail linking its campus and New College.

The project website also includes an online survey.

Located in Sarasota, New College of Florida has educated intellectually curious students for lives of great achievement since its founding in 1960. As the State of Florida’s designated honors college, New College provides an exceptional education that transforms students’ intellectual curiosity into personal accomplishment. The 110-acre bay front campus is home to more than 800 students and 80 full-time faculty engaged in interdisciplinary research and collaborative learning. New College offers nearly 40 areas of concentration for undergraduates and a master’s degree program in Data Science.

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