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Polk County BoCC Approves Amendment to CR 557 Widening Project

Published on Dec 6, 2022

Bartow, Fla. (Dec. 6, 2022) — The Polk County Board of County Commissioners has approved amendment No. 2 to Consulting Service Agreement 18-73 with Dewberry Engineers, Inc. for the CR 557 (Buena Vista Dr.) Widening project. This amendment is for $693,396.38, bringing the total cost of the project’s professional services to $4,835,272.38.

The widening of CR 557 has been identified in the 2018 – 2022 Adopted Polk County Community Investment Program (CIP) as a necessary improvement “based on projected level of service.” CR 557 serves as an interstate connector and is important to the efficient and reliable mobility of people and freight, both locally and regionally.

The project is significant because of increased traffic demands as more motorists are using CR 557 as an alternative to US Hwy. 27 as a north-south route to I-4. Increased residential growth in the surrounding area along the corridor is also diminishing the operating level of service (traffic flow and safety). Additional capacity (travel lanes accommodating more traffic) will reduce travel delays, particularly for through-traffic, while enhancing safety for all users.

“Increased traffic and population growth requires adding travel lanes to handle more vehicles more safely than the existing corridor,” said Jay Jarvis, Transportation Engineering Director for Polk County’s Roads and Drainage division. “The wider right-of-way also allows for the City of Lake Alfred to extend municipal utility systems to previously unincorporated areas relying on wells and septic tanks.”

Amendment No. 2 became a consideration when a Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT)/Lake Alfred project to modify US 17/92 was put on hold. Amendment No. 2 will extend the project schedule out to an anticipated completion date of December 31, 2027.