OCOEE – Most can agree that having to wait through four to five light cycles at a congested intersection with no left-turn lane is not fun, much less when the first car needs to make a left turn and uses the entire green light to do so.
This has been the case at the Fullers Cross/Ocoee-Apopka roads intersection during rush hour. Because of the lack of a left-turn lane on each approach, the intersection is highly vulnerable to traffic jams.
Residents frustrated with the regular congestion of the intersection have emailed Ocoee city leaders asking for a fix. During the March 6 commission meeting, Ocoee Mayor Rusty Johnson announced city staff has begun the process of making improvements to the intersection with the help of Orange County.
“It’s a process, but the county’s going to let us take the lead on it and start the process so that we can do the intersection improvements,” Johnson said.
Ocoee City Planner Mike Rumer said the city plans to add a left-turn lane for each approach of the intersection, but it will first need to produce engineering plans, evaluate the best options to procure construction services for the intersection improvements and get cost estimates.
“We had a meeting with the Orange County Public Works Division, and they agreed to be a 50% partner in this effort,” Rumer said. “We have collected considerable funds ... almost $300,000 from developers who developed in that area as part of their proportionate share of mitigation. And we also have right-of-way to contribute, so we’re waiting on an overall cost estimate, but we have a ballpark idea.”
IN OTHER NEWS
- Commissioners approved the capital project expenditure of $130,000 for restoration work at a city-maintained retention pond in the Coventry residential subdivision. A structure was damaged because of the rains from Hurricane Irma and must be fixed for the pond to function properly.
- City leaders approved allocating $2,000 of reserve money from the city’s 2015-16 budget and $10,000 of reserve funds from the city’s 2016-17 budget toward the cost of a capital project designated for the police department. The $12,000 will be used to install an aluminum screen enclosure over an existing outdoor patio area at the southeast corner of the building.
- To accommodate the construction of the new Ocoee City Hall, the city’s Employee Health Clinic will need to be relocated. The commission authorized $100,000 from the 2017 general fund budget for a new capital project to relocate the health clinic. City staff is evaluating options, which includes relocating the clinic in the current City Hall building or in a new, free-standing, multi-purpose building that would house the clinic on the first floor and reserve the second floor for office space.
- The commission also approved the reappointment of Jim Sills, Glenda Dunn, Jane Rainer and Eneida Cortes to the Community Grant Review Board with terms set to expire March 2020.