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Road expansions may get going by summer

The two highways, Starkey Boulevard and Trinity Boulevard, would be extended by about 3 miles each to connect with State Road 54.

By JAMES THORNER, Times Staff Writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published February 10, 2002

NEW PORT RICHEY -- Two roads that will make driving easier for thousands of Pasco County residents are supposed to materialize starting this year.

Trinity Boulevard and Starkey Boulevard will each grow by about three miles, Trinity from Little Road to State Road 54, Starkey from SR 54 to Alico Pass.

An existing stretch of Trinity Boulevard runs from East Lake Boulevard to Little Road. Starkey Boulevard starts at DeCubellis Road in the River Ridge community and dead ends at Alico Pass.

Loren Midgett, the county's project engineer, expects some of the traffic using Little Road to switch to Starkey once the link to SR 54 is complete in about 11/2 years.

"For everyone living on Ridge Road south it will be the shortest route to Tampa," Midgett said.

The biggest part of the $8.7-million Starkey Boulevard project is an 887-foot bridge over the Anclote River.

Most of the three miles of right of way was donated by the Starkey family, which is building housing developments whose residents will use the two-lane road. On its southern end, the boulevard will swing around the Starkey's partly complete Longleaf project.

"We could go to construction by summer if everything falls into place," said Assistant County Administrator Bipin Parikh. Trinity Boulevard is a project of Adam Smith Enterprises, the company behind a several-thousand-home Trinity development.

The 3-mile, two-lane road will cross the Fox Hollow, Fox Wood and Heritage Spring neighborhoods.

Although much of the land near the boulevard is still undeveloped, Trinity is obliged, in an agreement with Pasco, to complete the road by December.

Pasco will take ownership of Trinity Boulevard after it is completed.

The two new roads will feed a SR 54 increasingly jammed with traffic. The Starkeys and Adam Smith have sold land to the state Department of Transportation with the goal of widening SR 54 to six lanes between Little Road and Gunn Highway in 2004.

Dan Aldridge, the developer responsible for road construction, could not be reached for comment.

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