Manatee Girds for 3 More Bridge Projects


SARASOTA, FLORIDA, July 18th, 2016 – With Fort Hammer Bridge in East Manatee nearly one-third complete as of early July 2016, the county is pursuing construction of three more spans which are expected to help further ease local vehicular traffic and contribute in firing up further interest on the local property market.

Costing some $32.7 million, the Fort Hammer Bridge will open a link between Parrish and Lakewood Ranch. Its planned two-lane stretch spans some 2,300 feet across the Manatee River, connecting Fort Hammer Road with Upper Manatee River Road. Completion is projected in the summer of 2017.

DeSoto Replacement Prioritized

Manatee Girds for 3 More Bridge Projects

In 2017, more definite plans lay ahead on the replacement of the DeSoto Bridge whose service life is already at its end. The Sarasota/Manatee Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) in a June 2016 meeting included replacing this bridge amongst the regional priority projects listed with the Tampa Bay Area Regional Transportation Authority.

Currently unfunded, the bridge replacement can now be promoted by the MPO on the regional level for funding. The DeSoto Bridge was built in 1957 and last upgraded in 2012. Primarily serving the strategic U.S. 41 and U.S. 301 road corridors between Bradenton and Manatee, it is one of three spans across the Manatee River and has been lately experiencing some serious heavy traffic.

New Span across Braden River

Plans are moving forward too for the bridge over the Braden River, one of two spans included in the 44th Avenue East extension. This major road project would link Cortez Road in Bradenton and Lorraine Road in Lakewood Ranch. It costs a total of almost $130 million and also includes a bridge over Interstate 75 in its later stages winding up around 2027.

Final design work for the Braden River bridge is now underway, and its construction could start in 2017 if land acquisition for the span proceeds without a hitch. This part of the road extension spans from 45th Street East to Caruso Road at the eastern side of the river also teeming with prime Bradenton homes for sale.

By fall 2016, the 44th Ave. East extension project should already be around its halfway point with the expected completion of the segment between 30th and 45th Streets East. The next section, for which pre-design work has been finished, will already include the Braden River bridge construction and extend to Creekwood Blvd.

Added Home-buying Incentive

The 30th to 45th Streets East segment is planned as a four-lane extension of 44th Avenue East with a landscaped median. Besides sidewalks and street lights, the project also includes bike paths, adding some more delights to Bradenton homes for sale in the surrounding neighborhoods.

The communities in this locality include Highland Ridge and Sabal Harbour, which are popular for mid-priced Bradenton homes for sale. In May 2016, a four-bedroom Sabal Harbour home with nearly 1,700 square feet and an asking price in the low $200s was sold after just 14 days of its market listing.

Rich Mix for Home Buyers

Fairfax, another well-established neighborhood just west of Sabal Harbour and south of the 44th Ave. East extension provides equally fascinating finds for prospective buyers of Bradenton homes for sale. Its available properties are typically priced between the high $200s and the $400s for homes with three to four bedrooms within floor plans ranging from 1,800 to 2,800 square feet.

The new community of Stoneledge, with homes attractively priced in the $200s, will likewise get some added lift from the 44th Avenue East extension. Located west of Creekwood Boulevard, this community is just a short distance east of the new Braden River bridge looming as yet another plus to living in East Manatee.