Poinciana Parkway Q&A Dec 14, 2013
What is Poinciana Parkway?
Poinciana Parkway will be a toll road connecting Poinciana with I4 and Orlando
What will it connect to?
Poinciana Parkway will connect Cypress Parkway west of Poinciana Hospital Medical Center to US 17/92 in Davenport. It will cross 17/92 to Ronald Reagan Parkway which will provide multiple options to connect to Osceola CR 532 intersecting with I4 at Champions Gate.
What will it consist of?
The base parkway will consist of four sections. There will be a connection 17/92 in Polk County and the Poinciana Parkway Bridge called the Northwest Segment. There will be the Bridge Segment itself, and two additional segments South of the Bridge. The Southeast Segment will include improvements to Marigold Avenue north of Cypress Parkway. The Southwest segment will be a limited access toll road connecting Cypress Parkway to the bridge.
The Bridge Segment and the Southwest segment will be a limited access toll road designed for speeds of 65MPH. The Northwest segment and Southeast segment will be neighborhood feeder roads designed for 45MPH without tolls.
All segments will initially be 2 lanes with future expansion to 4.
What about the people who live on Marigold in Osceola County?
Marigold will be extended at the north end to intersect with the Poinciana Parkway bridge. Access will be provided to the parkway bridge without first having to go south to Cypress Parkway.
What about direct connection to I4 to the north and Florida Turnpike to the East?
There are follow-on projects that have been approved as part of the long term Central Florida transportation plan that will connect the Poinciana Parkway to I4 and connect Poinciana Cypress Parkway to Florida Turnpike. Both of these projects are funded for the original PD&E (Preliminary Design and Engineering) and the engineering work has begun.
There are two alternatives that are being considered to connect to I4. One alternative is to connect directly to SR 429 just west of the Disney/Celebration exit. The second alternative is to connect directly to I4 at the Champions Gate intersection.
Why 2 lanes initially? Why not 4 or 6 lanes?
The traffic studies indicated that two lane limited access roads will be sufficient to handle the first 10 years of traffic volumes. As traffic volumes increase then the additional tolls will pay for expansion of the parkway to additional lanes.
How much will the tolls be?
There will be two separate tolls. One will be for traffic riding Rhododendron connecting between Cypress Parkway and the bridge. A second toll will be collected for all traffic from both Rhododendron and Marigold using the bridge. The toll amount will depend upon the results of the traffic study and the amount of taxpayer dollars if any that might be available?
When can we expect construction to start?
The Osceola Expressway has already started to perform the survey work and rock depth testing. They are doing this to free the contractors from including these items in their bids. Initial RFP bids have been provided by contractors.
JR Davis Group of Kissimmee was selected as the winning bidder at an Osceola Expressway Authority Meeting held July 18,2013. Construction is expected to start in in early 2014.
When can we expect to use Poinciana Parkway?
The first phase of the parkway, connecting from Cypress Parkway to the intersection of US 17/92 and Ronald Reagan PKWY should be completed late 2015. The second phase connecting from Cypress Parkway directly to the bridge using the corridor where Rhododendron Ave exists today should be completed in mid 2016.
What is the status? Is this a ‘done deal’?
This is a ‘done deal’ from a contract viewpoint and with initial work having started. ‘It ain’t over till it’s over’ so everybody needs to stay involved in this.
Groundbreaking for the parkway will take place at 4:30PM Dec 18,2013 with actual start of construction in April 2014.
What about Poinciana Parkway in Polk County?
There is a road in Polk County Poinciana Village 7 called Poinciana Parkway. It connects the southern part of Marigold Avenue with Lake Hatchineha road. Same name but different road. The only planned connection would be via Marigold?
What about talk of a new Central Florida Expressway Authority?
There appear to be legislative bills being submitted during the 2013 Florida Legislative session that would consolidate the Orlando Expressway Authority with the Osceola Expressway Authority and also add jurisdiction for Lake and Seminole Counties. This legislation never made it through the 2013 Legislative session so for now the Osceola Expressway Authority and all their projects remain in place.
How much will this cost?
This is a combined effort between the two counties, AV Homes (Avatar) and the Osceola Expressway Authority. Funding will be obtained through a combination of funding committed by the two counties, FDOT funding, assets contributed by the developer AV Homes (Avatar), State of Florida backed loans and Osceola County backed bonds. The combination of funding will support the project estimated to cost a total of $150M. The parkway will be owned initially by Osceola County and leased to Osceola Expressway Authority for initial construction and development. Upon completion, as toll revenues are collected the Expressway Authority will purchase the Poinciana Parkway from Osceola County.
What about the Financial Status?
At the Expressway Authority meeting held Aug 13,2013 this subject was addressed. Discussion is underway with the financial institutions. With the delay caused by the Federal litigation caused by Lane Construction the final funding has been delayed. With the court case hopefully resolved we should soon receive and update for the funding target date.
Supposedly Construction is delayed because of a Federal Lawsuit?
At the meeting held Sept 10 it was stated that one of the losing bidders had filed a federal lawsuit challenging the Osceola Expressway Authority’s selection of Kissimmee’s JR Davis as the winning bidder. There was a federal hearing on the challenge scheduled for Oct 1,2013. On October 8 it was announced that the appeal was denied and that the project was back on track subject to some delay caused by the federal court case.