UPDATE: “Official groundbreaking celebrated for Inlet Beach Underpass”

UPDATE: “Official groundbreaking celebrated for Inlet Beach Underpass”

Photo: Walton County Public Information

“Ground was officially broken on March 26 for a project that had been years in preparation, the Inlet Beach Underpass.

Approximately 100 people attended the event hosted by the Walton County Board of County Commissioners (BCC) to mark the start of construction on this $5.6 million state Department of Transportation (DOT) project.

The lighted pedestrian underpass is to go under U.S. 98 on the east side of that highway’s eastern intersection with CR-30A in Inlet Beach, providing for non-interrupted flow of pedestrian access across U.S. 98. Objectives of the project include increasing safety at this busy intersection and mobility of pedestrian and vehicular traffic…

The design will allow entry of pedestrians only, with cyclists able to walk their bikes through the underpass.

Partnering with DOT to make the underpass a reality have been the BCC, the Walton County Tourist Development Council, and Scenic Walton, a nonprofit organization composed of business owners and residents.

Plans are for Scenic Walton to partner with Walton County’s Cultural Arts Association in order for art work to be provided to adorn the underpass when completed…”

— Dotty Nist, Defuniak Herald

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Sarasota: “A City of Visionaries, Roundabouts, and the Arts”

Sarasota: “A City of Visionaries, Roundabouts, and the Arts”

Photo: Nate Ilardi for City of Sarasota
The Jumping Fish sculpture stands 16 ft high by 12 ft wide in the center island of the modern roundabout at Cocoanut Avenue & Palm Avenue. The sculpture was selected from among 140 submissions and is the 84th piece in Sarasota’s Public Art Collection. It was sculpted in 2019 by Jeff Laramore.

“Sarasota, Florida is a city that has long proudly supported the arts.

The city’s vibrant arts scene includes the Ringling College of Art and Design, the famous Ringling Museum, an opera house, a ballet company, and the Sarasota Art Museum. Thanks to visionaries, the City’s Public Art Collection now includes downtown modern roundabouts graced with artworks.

Early on, then Sarasota City Engineer Dennis Daughters, then City Traffic Manager Sam Freija, and current City Engineer Alex Davis Shaw envisioned a downtown made more pedestrian friendly—and even more beautiful—with a collection of modern roundabouts. Today, their vision is coming to fruition.

‘We’re interested in the safety of walkability and connectivity to Sarasota Bay,” Downtown Sarasota Condo Association Transportation Committee Chair and Urban Planning Professor Emeritus at the University of Cincinnati Roger Barry said. “The roundabouts help supply that and appear to be extremely successful. I think we’re kind of proud of the fact Sarasota is an art-focused community and the roundabouts are an expression of that…'”


Five Points Roundabout at Main Street & Pineapple Avenue. Photo: Ken Sides


Embracing Our Differences Roundabout at Main Street & Orange Avenue. Photo: Nate Ilardi for City of Sarasota


Photo: Bravo! Roundabout at Ringling Boulevard & Orange Avenue. Photo: Ken Sides


To help a skeptical public understand what it would get in return for giving up the two travel lanes, Sarasota-based Hoyt Architects Lab created a rendering depicting how different the three intersections could look with marine-themed public art in the roundabout central islands for the Fruitville Road roundabout. Image: Hoyt Architecture Lab.

— Ken Sides, Roads and Bridges

Read entire detailed article in Roads and Bridges

NEW! Scenic Florida’s Section in the Bill Brinton Library devoted to Scenic Intersections