Nebraska Avenue PD&E Study

Project Description

The Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA) is conducting a Project Development and Environment (PD&E) Study to evaluate the needs, costs, and effects of constructing transportation network improvements to increase mobility and vehicular capacity within the immediate roadway network surrounding the Selmon Expressway Reversible Express Lanes (REL) terminus at Meridian Avenue. Potential improvements may be recommended for North Nebraska Avenue (US 41/SR 45) from south of East Twiggs Street to East Cass Street as well as other intersections or arterials. Depending on the needs, this study is expected to identify short-term operational improvements and implementation of Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS), Transportation Systems Management and Operations (TSM&O) strategies and use of other transportation technology to improve traffic flow coming off the REL and distributing it into downtown Tampa.

Study Objective

The primary focus of this study is to identify needs, test alternatives, and develop recommendations to alleviate congestion and more efficiently distribute traffic as it enters downtown after exiting the REL system. Several study intersections will be analyzed in this study for potential improvements. The study will ultimately recommend a Preferred Alternative configuration of travel lanes, turn lanes, and intersections, and an implementation plan for feasible traffic management strategies. Right-of-way (ROW) impacts for this project will be minimized as much as possible.

Study Area

The study area map shows the coverage area for the Meridian Ultimate Nebraska Avenue Improvements PD&E Study.

Nebraska Map

Project Background

The purpose of this project is to improve safety, accessibility and circulation along the Selmon Expressway and throughout the downtown and Channel District. The eastern portion of the Selmon Expressway services large volumes of highly directional commuter traffic traveling between downtown and I-75 (and southeast Hillsborough County). To maximize efficiency, the Expressway features the Reversible Express Lane (REL) system that extends from downtown (at North Meridian Avenue) to Brandon Parkway in Brandon. The high volume of westbound traffic exiting the REL in the morning (AM) peak period experiences recurring congestion and queuing as it enters downtown at North Meridian Avenue. Significant development throughout the City and Channel District, alongside anticipated traffic demand on the Selmon Expressway, has further spurred the need to improve downtown accessibility and circulation options, as well as enhance the safety and traffic flow along the Selmon Expressway.

The Meridian Ultimate Nebraska Avenue Improvements PD&E Study will be conducted in close coordination with the Whiting Street PD&E, the South Selmon PD&E, and Selmon East PD&E to study capacity needs along the entire Selmon Expressway.

Why is the Study Needed?

Improve <br>Travel Times

Travel Times

Reduce<br>Traffic Congestion

Traffic Congestion

Improve<br> Safety


Enhance Regional<br>  Mobility

Enhance Regional

Accommodate Future<br> Travel Demand

Accommodate Future
Travel Demand

Travel time reliability is important to our customers. We are looking at ways to reduce travel times during the morning and evening rush.
One of the primary goals of this study is to identify solutions to the frequent congestion at entry and exit points along the Selmon Expressway.
The Study will evaluate strategies to eliminate conflict points and reduce crashes.
Reduced congestion and improved safety coupled with the Selmon Extension Project will enhance east-west mobility for the region.
Hillsborough County’s population is projected to increase 38% by 2045.

Study Schedule

The Meridian Ultimate Nebraska Avenue Improvements PD&E Study began in the third quarter of 2020 and is anticipated to be completed in early 2023.