Road work file photo

Polk County Commissioners recently learned that proposed improvements to both Cypress Parkway and Marigold Avenue, in the northeast area of the county, will cost about $45 million — and they also learned that the project has fallen about six months behind its original schedule.

County officials explained that the two road segments, a total of about four miles, will ultimately relieve congestion and improve safety on the highly traveled two-lane roads.

Polk County Roads and Bridges director Jay Jarvis said last week the two road projects combined were originally scheduled for design last year, but due to the pandemic and other unforeseen factors, had fallen behind.

“Those were scheduled for design in 2020, but the schedule was impacted by the pandemic and other projects,” he explained.

The county had programmed some $9 million in 2020 for preliminary engineering and design, according to Jarvis, but that has shifted into this year, sliding the start of construction out in the county's capital improvement plan into 2022.

Construction is estimated to cost $21 million and should be completed by 2024.

“These projects are going to improve the safety and relieve congestion in the northeast county,” Jarvis said, adding that they will also link to existing or planned toll roads into and around the greater Orlando area.

The projects are to tie into the Poinciana Parkway’s expansion from two lanes to four, which is being done by the Central Florida Expressway Authority, Jarvis added.

The $45 million figure includes the cost for building both segments of the project, some $3 million of which will go to pay for the design and another $3 million for engineering oversight during construction.