Price tag for new Gateway expressway is $454M

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Florida Department of Transportation officials say a new expressway linking two major roads in the Tampa Bay area will cost about $454 million — about $116 million more than first announced.

Most of the extra expense is from buying right-of-way along the route, a cost estimated at $93.5 million.

The expressway will eventually link Interstate 275 and U.S. 19, and the unfunded project has been moved forward by as much as 20 years.

The Tampa Tribune reports that DOT officials revealed the cost of right-of-way purchases to the Pinellas County Commission at a workshop Tuesday. They also announced that the toll to drive elevated sections to avoid stoplights will be 75 cents and that the five-year construction schedule also could make life complicated for the St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.