The U.S. 19 corridor in Clearwater is about to become more attractive, successful and sustainable.
Preliminary plans are in the works to improve the Clearwater stretch of U.S. 19 because conditions along the main north-south road have changed dramatically over the past several years.
According to Cate Lee, planner at the City's Planning and Development Department
, recent construction has begun hurting some businesses dependent on impulse customers relying on direct access from U.S. 19. The City's new plans will allow and incentivize investment in properties located along the corridor that may be prohibited or discouraged now under current plans or codes.
“The City of Clearwater is undertaking this planning process to set the framework for development post-Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT)
roadway improvements,” Lee says. “The plan that will be the end result of the current study will guide growth along the corridor for the next few decades.”
Offering recommendations on a wide range of topics from land use to urban design and mobility to sustainability, the final report will promote more sustainable forms and patterns of development by improving vehicle, pedestrian and bike connections throughout Clearwater
Currently, the study area includes the segments of the U.S. 19 corridor from Belleair Road north to Curlew Road while considering the future of Gulf to Bay Boulevard, Drew Street and North McMullen Booth Road.
“This planning effort takes a long range view of the corridor: What is the future? What types of land use and development do people who, work, play and shop along the corridor want to see?,” Lee says. “The roadway improvements allow for greater regional connectivity to Tampa
and south Pinellas and north Pasco counties.”
Lee stresses the importance of taking advantage of the corridor plans and improvements to create more jobs and quality places for residents to live, work and play. The City expects final planning and approval of the plan by the end of Summer 2012 with the final adoption by City Council
by Fall 2012.
Want to have a say in the changes made along the corridor? The City is encouraging feedback from those who regularly use the Clearwater portion of U.S. 19 to help identify problems, offer ideas and suggest possible solutions via an online discussion board
Writer: Alexis Quinn Chamberlain
Source: Cate Lee, City of Clearwater