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$3.3M Middle Keys road project includes intersection change

The three-way intersection at 33rd Street and U.S. 1 in Marathon will be turned into a four-way intersection starting in late May.
The three-way intersection at 33rd Street and U.S. 1 in Marathon will be turned into a four-way intersection starting in late May. Keynoter

Marathon residents and visitors can soon say goodbye to uninterrupted travel near mile marker 49.

The Florida Department of Transportation and city of Marathon road project extends from 33rd Street to 37th Street. The three-way traffic light at U.S. 1 and 33rd Street is being changed to a four-way light with an entrance to Fishermen’s Community Hospital added.

Currently, the entrance and exit to the hospital are to the east and west of the traffic light.

“Right now they’re mobilizing and getting the area ready for construction,” said Paulette Summers, public information specialist for the Florida Department of Transportation. “You’ll see tractors and stuff there, but they have to get some things in place. You won’t be seeing any actual construction out there until toward the end of May.”

There are no lane or sidewalk closures scheduled until then.

The project is a partnership of the city and DOT. The road will be restriped, repaved and widened to add a two-way center turning lane near the four-way intersection at 33rd Street and to the east near 35th Street. Outside lanes will be widened for bike travel.

“That entire stretch has a fair amount of congestion,” said Marathon Planning Director George Garrett. “The major benefit is getting a four-way light there and being able to get emergency vehicles quickly in and out of the hospital without worrying.”

The traffic light is part of a $3.3 million ongoing project which also involves improved traffic lights at six intersections from mile marker 50 to 54.5.

The road at the north end of the Seven Mile Bridge to south of Knight’s Key Boulevard will be repaved and restriped and the northbound shoulder will being widened with the existing guardrail replaced.

Summers said construction in all three areas is set to finish by December.

Katie Atkins: 305-440-3219

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