Governor seeking ‘best value,’ speed on road projects

Ron DeSantis
"I just want to make sure we are getting the best value.”

With an eye on traffic headaches throughout the Sunshine State, Gov. Ron DeSantis said he has expressed concerns to the head of the Florida Department of Transportation about the cost and length of time to get projects completed.

“I think if you look at some of the price tags in these things, I just want to make sure we are getting the best value,” the Governor told reporters in Orlando on Friday after a speech to members of the Florida Realtors Association.

DeSantis added that he would like to see infrastructure projects done “as soon as possible and not take forever and a day.”

The Republican Governor, who took office in January, added, “We are working on ways to be able to do that. … I have talked to the DOT Secretary and he understands that that is a concern of mine.”

While the Governor said he was not referring to any specific projects, DeSantis did say he would like a “speed up” on the I-4 Ultimate corridor expansion project, and he would like the project to be more cost-effective.

The Governor also wants to see infrastructure projects in Central and Southeast Florida, areas of the state that have the most congestion. And with Universal Orlando Resort building a new theme park, DeSantis said the state will be acting as a “partner” to help with road improvements.

“[Universal officials] have worked with DOT because there are some roads that need to be done,” the Governor said. “We have worked constructively with them on that and we will continue to do so.”

The Orlando Sentinel reported Friday a state grant will help build a 1.7-mile road extension that will run alongside or through Universal’s property, where the new theme park is being built. “Orlando is a place for marquee attractions and I think this Universal park is taking it to the next level,” DeSantis said.

Ana Ceballos

Ana covers politics and policy Before joining the News Service of Florida she wrote for the Naples Daily News and was the legislative relief reporter for The Associated Press and covered policy issues impacting immigration, the environment, criminal justice and social welfare in Florida. She holds a B.A. in journalism from San Diego State University. After graduating in 2014, she worked as a criminal justice reporter for the Monterey Herald and the Monterey County Weekly. She has also freelanced for The Washington Post at the U.S.-Mexico border covering crime in the border city of Tijuana, where she grew up. Ana is fluent in Spanish and has intermediate proficiency in Portuguese.

One comment

  • Sonja Fitch

    August 24, 2019 at 4:59 pm

    Sir Governor. Check out the waste of money installing that ridiculous SUN crap around 295 and the other SUN crap tolls. Complete waste of money. But the danger and inadequate merging on and off of Buckman bridge worries me even more. If money was needed DOD paid for Buckman. What other resources were considered besides the dangerous SUN tolls?

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