The weather is supposed to be beautiful this weekend in the Tampa Bay area which is sure to drive people out of their houses and onto the roads. Before setting out on a weekend adventure there are a larger than average number of closures to be aware of in and around Tampa Bay. Bad traffic, congested roads, and unplanned detours can quickly derail a good time.
First, according to the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), lanes of northbound and southbound of Interstate 75 will be closed and diverted on Friday night and Saturday night. The project is due to take place between 9 PM and 9 AM on October 15th and October 16th. The plans for the closures from the department's Tampa Bay office reads as follows:
Southbound I-75 traffic will be detoured off the interstate between SR 52 (Exit 285) and SR 54/CR 54 (Exit 279) between 9 p.m. Friday, October 15 and 9 a.m. Saturday, October 16.
Northbound I-75 traffic will be detoured off the interstate between SR 54/CR 54 (Exit 279) and SR 52 (Exit 285) between 9 p.m. Saturday, October 16 and 9 a.m. Sunday, October 17.
The closures are part of the large Overpass Road interchange project which is adding an entirely new entrance and exit to Interstate 75 north of Wesley Chapel. According to the project information, the road has to be closed in order to prepare and set large infrastructure support beams for the new overpass.
If you do need to take this route during the hours posted, they have provided the best detour routes:
DETOUR ROUTE for southbound I-75: Traffic will be directed off at Exit 285. At the bottom of the ramp, turn right onto SR 52 and continue for approximately one-half mile. At the next traffic signal (Old Pasco Road), turn left and go south on Old Pasco Road for approximately 6.75 miles to CR 54/SR 54. Turn left at the traffic signal onto SR 54/CR 54/Wesley Chapel Boulevard and continue east about 7 tenths of a mile to re-enter southbound I-75.
DETOUR ROUTE for northbound I-75: Traffic will be directed off northbound I-75 at Exit 279. At the bottom of the ramp, turn left onto SR 54/CR 54/Wesley Chapel Boulevard and continue west about 8 tenths of a mile to Old Pasco Road. At the traffic signal for Old Pasco Road, turn right and go north for approximately 6.75 miles to SR 52. Turn right at the traffic signal onto SR 52 and go east about 3/4 mile. After passing under I-75, turn left onto the entrance ramp to re-enter northbound I-75.
Detour maps are available on the website here.
In addition to the closure of a major artery this weekend, a portion of the Tampa Riverwalk around the Convention Center will also be closing. Starting on October 13th, a stretch of the popular Riverwalk between Sail Plaza and the Platt Street Bridge will be shut down due to construction. The construction is taking place at the Convention Center itself and will be ongoing for at least a year.
Plans to reopen the Riverwalk are set to take place on December 22nd, 2022 barring any delays in construction. A detour has been opened that will divert locals and tourists around the construction site with signs posted.
Before you head out this weekend be sure to check the latest local traffic to stay on top of any changing situations regarding these and other closures.