Jack and Joanne Slotterback decided to spend their vacation in Central Florida this year.
- Pedestrian bridge for Kirkman Road crossing
- 250,000 people cross the section near Major Boulevard each year
- Bridge is part of I-4 Ultimate project
"We're visiting from South Jersey just outside of Philadelphia and we're spending a few days in Universal," said Joanne Slotterback.
After spending a few days in the Disney World attractions area, the couple found crossing the street near Universal Orlando to be nerve-wracking.
“It’s a little scary,” said Jack Slotterback. “There’s a huge amount of traffic here and all these lanes.”
The Slotterbacks are referring to the crossing of Kirkman Road from Major Boulevard, just south of the Interstate 4 interchange.
"We've got 68 million visitors that came to Central Florida last year alone and folks are certainly still coming to check out everything at Universal Studios and the other attractions as well,” said Dave Parks of the I-4 Ultimate Project. “So we want to make sure we are accommodating everybody coming by car and by foot."
Officials with I-4 Ultimate are making sure by building a new pedestrian bridge.
It’s estimated that more than 250,000 people cross over the section of Kirkman Road near Major Boulevard each year. That's why there is a great need for that bridge.
Due to the close proximity to I-4, the bridge is technically part of I-4 Ultimate. Once it's completed, however, ownership and maintenance will actually change hands to both the city of Orlando and Universal.
The city released concept art this week showing what the bridge could look like aesthetically when it's completed. It was approved last week and was essentially the last step in the planning process, which could be complete in the next few months.
"Crews have already got a lot of the foundational work in and getting ready to start seeing some things going in above ground here in the next few weeks and we're on schedule to wrap up this bridge and have it ready for pedestrian usage as soon as this summer 2018,” Parks said. “So we're moving right along."
As for the Slotterbacks, they enjoyed their time in Central Florida and look forward to coming back, albeit with safer passage.
"This intersection is very scary to me,” said Joanne Slotterback. “Yesterday, the walk signs were not coming up. We actually waited three cycles. We had to walk across when the light was red. And it was quite scary. I would feel better if we had a crosswalk here."