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I-10 interchange ramp proposal in Okaloosa County
OKALOOSA COUNTY -- CRESTVIEW - Growth and gridlock the city of Crestview has both. An Okaloosa Commissioner has a proposal to ease some of that traffic congestion.
Nathan Boyles is asking the Florida Department of Transportation to consider a second exit from 1-10 in Crestview. He says a logical location would be where PJ Adams Parkway crosses over the highway now.
Laura Hussey "Right behind me is the current I-10 interchange in Crestview. This is State Road 85. People who drive it every day will tell you the road simply can't handle the traffic it's getting."
For Jenny Anderson, getting stuck in traffic is part of the daily grind.
Jenny "It takes forever, you get stuck by the lights multiple times."
At Body-B-Healthy, owner Bonnie Dees says the congestion isn't just frustrating, it's dangerous.
Bonnie "It gets pretty hectic. Especially the rain, immediately you'll hear the sirens, and you know, you hear congestion. So it definitely backs up."
As the Florida Department of Transportation develops the I-10 master plan, Commissioner Nathan Boyles is asking them to consider a second interchange, west of the current Crestview exit.
Anderson says an exit to PJ Adams Parkway would save her money on gas, and 20 to 30 minutes of driving each day.
Jenny "In order to get home off of PJ Adams, I either have to take the Crestview exit or take the Holt exit and then drive all the way around."
Boyles says the whole county would see economic benefits. Tourists could get to the beach more easily; businesses would have the road network they need to succeed.
Nathan Boyles "I think one of the problems with politicians and elected officials is sometimes we plan based on election cycles. But the reality is that big infrastructure projects don't happen in a four-year cycle, they take much longer."
If the DOT approves a second interchange, Boyles says it could be ten or twenty years before it's built.
Bonnie "I have customers come in daily, complaining. They're like, I would rather live in Atlanta than this."
Laura Hussey "As Commissioner Boyles said, this would be a very long-range project. He says he's writing a letter to DOT now to start the conversation."