Drivers and pedestrians in Palmetto Bay who have been coping with potholes and other rough patches along SW 144th Street will soon have a new, smooth road to travel or cross.
A major improvement project beginning in July will redo the roadway all the way from S. Dixie Highway (US1) to 67th Avenue (Ludlam Road), according to Corrice Patterson, village Public Works director.
“We’re going to resurface the road and resurface into the right-of-way on the side streets so there’s a smooth transition from the street to the new roadway,” Patterson said. “We’ve sent out flyers to anyone along that roadway or a half-block into the side streets. That’s scheduled to start July 12 if there are no delays or weather issues.
“At the US1 end we have to actually start at the right-of-way since it’s a state road. The road will be completely resurfaced, striped, and have new pavement markers put down. There will be some maintenance of traffic in place for the residents and anyone who travels that roadway.”
The road resurfacing project will be done one side at a time to keep it open and not shut traffic down completely. Work is expected to be completed within two weeks.
“We have $250,000 in our budget for resurfacing, so our main priority is to get 144th street completely resurfaced and with appropriate striping marks for travel,” Patterson said. “Anything remaining, we’ll try to complete some additional roadways from our master plan.”
District 1 Councilmember Patrick Fiore is credited with getting the ball rolling on the project after several neighborhood groups he met with had expressed concern over the condition of the road.
“I like to be known as the public works councilman,” Fiore said. “It fulfills a campaign promise. 144th Street was badly damaged and needed resurfacing or repairing. There were many potholes and we got a lot of them fixed in my first six months in office.
“Public Works was very instrumental in getting guys out there to patch them but that was temporary patching. It was pretty bad in spots, especially at the intersection of 144th and US1. It was very chewed up, so it needed repaving because it was dangerous for pedestrians and the disabled to cross there.”
Fiore said that in addition to the other reasons, SW 144th Street is significant because of the Urgent Care Center at Baptist Medical Plaza there. He said that summer was the best time to do the resurfacing because many people are away and school is out. He appreciated the help of everyone in village government.
“I want to thank the Public Works director, our village manager and my colleagues on the council for supporting this,” Fiore said.