Seminole leaders consider roundabouts to ease traffic along SR 434

In 2017, 46,000 cars traveled from SR 417 to Franklin Street

SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. – Seminole County and city leaders are working to ease traffic congestion along State Road 434 near State Road 417.

People who live and work in the area, like Melissa Ridenour, said traffic is horrible. Ridenour works at a nearby salon and said it takes customers a long time to leave the shopping plaza.

"It could take you 10 minutes to cross the street," Ridenour said. 

She said traffic is especially bad during rush hour.

"A lot of clients in the area have a problem getting out, crossing the traffic," she said. 

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Seminole County Commissioner Bob Dallari said congestion in the area has been a problem for years. 

According to the Florida Department of Transportation, on an average day in 2017, more than 46,000 cars drove from the S.R. 417 to Franklin Street in Oviedo. 

The county is now working to ease the traffic backup. Dallari said it is working with the cities of Oviedo and Winter Springs, FDOT and MetroPlan Orlando to reduce the congestion. 

The current proposal calls for three roundabouts at Artesia Street, Hammock Lane and MacTavandash Drive. It also includes new sidewalks and crosswalks. 

Jesse Phillips is with the Winter Springs Community Association, a group that advocates for the growth and prosperity of the city. He said this project would make the area safer. 

"We really need to take a look at the whole area and figure out how we can get cars through there faster and how we can get bikes and pedestrians and people in and out of the neighborhoods safer," Phillips said. 

Dallari said the Winter Springs City Council passed a resolution this week in favor of the project. Proponents are expected to attend Oviedo's city council meeting next week seeking support.

Dallari said they don't have an exact cost of the project yet, but it will be at least $10 million. 

Some residents said they don't like the idea of roundabouts, but Phillips believes they will make the roads safer. He said he's glad area leaders are stepping up to solve this longstanding problem. 

"This is just the start, but it's good to see some baby steps," Phillips said. 

Dallari said they hope to start the design phase of the project in January. 

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