Overpass planned at Collier and Immokalee, but it's well down the road ☘ Hoey Team ☘ eXp Realty

Dated: 06/18/2019

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You may have noticed the intersection of Immokalee Road and Collier Boulevard is busy.  And getting busier.

The county’s transportation staff has noticed it too.

So much so that they’re planning a flyover to carry Immokalee Road traffic past Collier Boulevard on what would be one of a growing number of overpasses in the county.

On Tuesday county commissioners will be asked to approve a plan that calls for developers of the proposed Baumgarten residential and business complex to set aside right of way and agree to accept stormwater runoff from the overpass.

The item is separate from the overall approval of the Baumgarten project, which is also on Tuesday’s agenda.

No completion date is outlined in the supporting documents, which state the overpass,  “Is likely to be constructed long after the anticipated completion of the development.”

Long-range transportation plans suggest it will be needed by 2035 but no funding has been set aside for it, planners say. Currently, Immokalee Road in that area handles about 35,000 car trips a day, Collier Boulevard about 28,000. 

In exchange for the 1.34-acre right-of-way for the road improvements, the developer will get two access points from Immokalee Road, documents indicate.

The Baumgarten project will take the place of Pelican Nursery on the southeast corner of the two major roads.

It will hold as many as 400 apartments and condominiums and up to 270,000 square feet of commercial space.

According to preliminary drawings accompanying the agenda item, the flyover would begin on the west at the entrance to Pebblebrooke Lakes. A traffic light is anticipated there, the documents state.

It would arch over Collier Boulevard with three eastbound and three westbound lanes before ending at the eastern edge of the Baumgarten property where it borders the Bent Creek Preserve neighborhood.

Traffic looking to turn onto Collier Boulevard would be handled much the same way turning traffic is handled at the Golden Gate Parkway overpass at Airport-Pulling Road, with all traffic, even drivers wishing to turn left, exiting the road to the right into dedicated turn lanes.

That overpass, opened in 2007 at a cost of $38 million, faced intense opposition from neighbors, who feared it would be unsightly, and from some in the community who believed it signaled a shift in Naples from a small town to a big city.

From a traffic standpoint the Golden Gate overpass works well, and aesthetically it’s more appealing than its detractors predicted. 

Will that blunt opposition to another overpass?

We may not have to wait until “long after” the Baumgarten project wraps up to find out.

Another overpass, this one on Collier Boulevard at Davis Boulevard, is further along in the pipeline.

It’s a Florida Department of Transportation project but in May, county commissioners approved $9 million in water and sewer line work in advance of the road construction.

Design of those road improvements could begin in October 2020, and construction could start as early as August 2023.

And as for the name, Baumgarten PUD, which the project has been called during the planning process, that surely won’t be the name the marketers use when they’re trying to sell homes and commercial space, will it?

The planning documents suggest another name is in the works.

The two access points into the development are labeled “Founders’ Lane” and “Founders’ Place” on plans. They both lead to the main road, “Founders’ Square Drive.”

I’m guessing the developers have in mind a name with “Founders’” in it.

From Naples Daily News

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