Pasco County has been attracting more residential, commercial and industrial development in recent years — leading to new opportunities and population growth.
But the growth creates traffic and there’s growing pushback against the county’s clogged traffic arteries.
Carla Card appeared, via a remote feed, during the public comment portion of the Pasco County Commission’s Dec. 7 meeting.
“I’m here today to discuss the tremendous growth, which is leading to the terrible traffic issues and accidents, near State Road 54, State Road 56, the Grove (at Wesley Chapel), Tampa Premium Outlets, and Old Pasco Road to Bruce B. Downs (Boulevard),” Card said.
“My home is off of Wesley Chapel Boulevard, and this concerns County (Commission) Districts 1, 2 and 3.
“Fender-benders and horrible accidents are happening in this area every day because of the overgrowth in population.
“Our community can’t handle any more.
“Not only is the gridlock and the buildup negatively affecting the quality of life with current residents, but it’s also negatively affecting the wildlife that has nowhere to go and live.
“Deer are constantly being maimed and killed on these hazardous roads, and it’s very disturbing to see.
“The new construction in the area needs to be reviewed and additional development in this area should be halted, if there is no funding to fix the road issues.
“We certainly should not allow more development to increase in this area, which actually increases the chaos.
“There are several new multi-tenant buildings being built right now. Once completed, the population will grow and cause more traffic issues.
“It’s so bad right now that emergency vehicles are not able to respond quickly.
“And, how awful this is, if you or a loved one needs emergency care.
“So, we must stop any new developments until we get this traffic under control.
“People are running red lights and blocking intersections, which is just causing mayhem.
“It takes me over 35 minutes to get to I-75 (Interstate 75) and it used to take 12 minutes.
“There are six traffic lights in a short distance, and not one works to move the flow of traffic correctly.
“There are too many businesses near the I-75 on- and off-ramps. This is extremely dangerous.
“We need to stop new development or require developers to pay for the build on the roads necessary, prior to the development of new structures. It’s just really becoming too much,” Card said.
During a different portion of the same meeting, Pasco County Commissioner Mike Moore also expressed concerns about growing gridlock.
He showed his colleagues photos he took of traffic backed up on Wesley Chapel Boulevard, which turns into County Road 54.
“My son practices and plays golf a lot at Lexington Oaks Golf Club,” Moore said.
“I live in Seven Oaks, which is literally 5.9 miles away.
“It’s taken me 45 minutes, to go 5.9 miles,” he said, noting he makes the trip between 4:15 p.m. to 5 p.m.
By comparison, it only take 18 minutes to 21 minutes to get to Interstate 4, from Interstate 75, he said.
The traffic that’s backed up is not waiting to get on I-75, but rather waiting to make its way through Pasco County, Moore said.
“We have a lot of things coming up in this area. The area I just showed you is the exact area where an apartment complex was just approved. Another one (multifamily) in front of Lexington Oaks; another one is being built a block away.
“If you go around the corner, that’s that one that got approved on Bruce B. Downs (Boulevard), and there’s a couple more that are coming up for votes in the future,” Moore said.
“This road can’t handle any more. When I say no more — no more.”
Moore continued: “That’s not a good quality of life.”
“Nothing more can go around that area. We can’t handle any more. The citizens can’t handle any more,” said the commissioner, who successfully persuaded his colleagues to approve a temporary moratorium on new multifamily applications in a portion of his district.
The board is expected to revisit that issue in early 2022 because Moore would like to include some additional areas that are now part of his district.
The new areas became part of Moore’s District 2, when the county board approved new boundaries as part of the redistricting process that occurs every 10 years, after the U.S. Census count is completed.
Published December 29, 2021
Linda Morris says
You forgot the traffic that will increase from Curley Road to Eiland on Rt. 54 east because of the new housing and businesses being built. The widening of Rt. 54 east will be obsolete before it is completed. How absurd to build all these residential and retail buildings and not have a good traffic pattern. The traffic is backed up now and the new residential buildings are not open yet.
Gail Punturo says
I avoid CR 54 at all cost but unfortunately , my Primary Dr is on 54 near Duck Slough. ??. I don’t feel safe to drive anymore. And NOW!! The Developers moved their attention to SR-52. WE DO NOT WANT OUR ROADS TO TURN INTO THE DEATH ROAD OF 54!!!!! I’m referring to between Moon Lake Rd and 41. It’s a Night mare. And now, The Developers RAPED acres and acres of land on Hays Rd. ???. WTH!! There is no place safe for wildlife anymore and the Country life that drew us here is no longer Country. Leave some land UNDEVELOPED FOR WILDLIFE. NOT EVERYONE WANTS TO LIVE IN A CONCRETE CITY ??♀️??♀️
Al Walker says
How about the new mass of apartment building in the Trinity area
54 and Trinity Blvd.
When occupied this will be another nightmare
Just WHO is responsible for approving all of this OVER DEVELOPMENT without proper infrastructure to handle this ??? These are the people that need to answer for this mess. It is criminal what is happening here to do this without available funds to support needed infrastructure.
If they are elected, we need to get them out of there. If they are appointed, who appointed them? Who is monitoring the hen house anyway??? Is someone making out personally for the approvals of this massive amount of overdevelopment ???
These are all questions that need addressed. It needs to stop immediately until all these issues are addressed AND improvements FUNDED by the developers NOT the taxpayers!
There are three Pasco county commissioners of the five that constantly vote for more building,
-Kathryn Starkey(whose family is in construction ?),makes you wonder how the construction company that backed out on all of their Pasco contracts
won the bids.
– Christina Fitzpatrick who is clueless and just agrees with Starkey on just about everything, they once had to put a meeting on hold to explain to her what they were actually voting on.
-Ron Oakley, not sure what’s up his sleeve but it’s probably Starkey….
When I went to real estate school over 20 years ago I remember learning that infrastructure was supposed to be put into place before the Housing Development work??? What happened to Penny for Pasco??? As a 35-year resident of Polk County recently moving into Pasco County, I have never seen a deer in 35 years in Polk County. In Pasco, I see a dead deer on the road every week, the protected birds are trying to cross the street because they’re being forced out of their natural habitats. I have never seen lights three minutes long, it is out of control. Answer: Stop building, Speed up the lights, folks slow down, relax, save a life.
I wish someone would listen to what you’re saying. It is way out of control.