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Two local road closures

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As construction continues along the 21-mile corridor of the I-4 Ultimate project, local roads near the project are closed occasionally for utility relocations, drainage improvements and other construction activities.

Portions of two local roads in the north Orlando area are closing long-term:

Formosa Avenue

The north end of Formosa Avenue at Minnesota Avenue closed on October 18 at 10 p.m. Installation of extensive drainage infrastructure is causing this closure to remain in place until November 18 at 5 a.m. While a portion of Formosa Avenue is closed, restricting access between Par Street and Minnesota Avenue, all homeowners are able to access their driveways along Formosa Avenue.

Dade Avenue

Dade Avenue between Groveland Street and Bay Run Street is scheduled to close on November 2 at 10 p.m. This closure will remain in place until May 2016. Access for residents and businesses will be available during the closure. No thru traffic will be permitted.

As a result of these closures, residents can expect an increase in nighttime construction activity in these areas. To stay up to date on all lane, ramp and road closures, sign up for the I-4 Ultimate weekly construction alerts.

Westbound I-4 sees second major traffic shift

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Another major traffic shift was put in place on westbound Interstate 4 (I-4) this month; signs that the I-4 Ultimate project is progressing.

A second long-term traffic shift opened on October 12 near the Formosa Avenue overpass. At approximately one-third of a mile long, the traffic shift relocated the westbound lanes to newly constructed temporary lanes, west of the of the existing travel lanes. The first major traffic shift on westbound I-4 opened near Lake Ivanhoe on October 4.

“These major traffic shifts are a big change for people,” said David Parks, I-4 Ultimate Public Information Officer. “We certainly hope all motorists are extra cautious while approaching these new traffic patterns.”

As precursors to larger changes, both traffic shifts involved constructing temporary westbound travel lanes. In the next several months, the eastbound lanes in these two areas will shift to the old westbound lanes. These future traffic shifts will create work zones on the east side of the interstate. In these safe work zones, workers will begin constructing the new eastbound general use lanes.

“Our goal is to protect the safety of motorists and workers while keeping traffic flowing smoothly and construction moving ahead,” Parks said.

For more information, including an up-to-date list of traffic shifts, visit Motorists are encouraged to sign up for project newsletters and route-specific alerts through the website to help make informed decisions about when and where to travel.

I-4 Ultimate project recognized at P3 Awards

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The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) and its I-4 Ultimate project were honored at the 2015 North American P3 (public-private partnerships) Awards held on October 8 in New York City.

“We are extremely proud of the recognition the I-4 Ultimate project has received to date,” said Loreen Bobo, P.E., I-4 Ultimate Construction Program Manager. “This award validates the hard work we've put into developing this P3 project for Central Florida and gives us added momentum to see this project to its successful completion.”

The second annual P3 Awards recognized outstanding achievements in public-private partnerships across Canada, USA and Latin America. More than 80 entries were submitted for a variety of categories.

The I-4 Ultimate project was awarded the Silver Award in the category for “Best Transport Project.” According to the P3 Awards program, the I-4 Ultimate project, “stands out due to its scale and complexity. The judges liked the flexibility that was built into the contract, and highlighted the effective transfer of risk in the project to the private sector. Despite being a large, landmark project for Florida, the judges were impressed the project reached financial close quickly. The fact the P3 model meant the project could be delivered 20 years sooner than under conventional procurement was considered by the judges to be a compelling example of the benefits of the P3 model.”

FDOT was awarded the Silver Award in the category of “Government Agency of the Year.” The awards program reads, “The department’s flagship I-4 Ultimate P3 project was hailed as a well-executed and well-structured deal by the judges. Florida DOT continues to add to the already long list of successful P3 projects within the department which incorporate cost savings and strong long-term partnerships.”

GPS system helps ensure safe, efficient use of vehicles and equipment

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Efficiency, safety and economy – those are three of the overarching principles guiding the I-4 Ultimate project.

They also represent three important processes that I-4 Ultimate managers can monitor through the Heavy Equipment Systems Specialist GPS system that tracks vehicles and equipment used by the project team. The system sends data to managers about activities such as driving habits, usage, fuel consumption and maintenance schedules on the machinery being used to remake a 21-mile stretch of Interstate 4 (I-4) in Central Florida.

Phil Picone, SGL Constructor’s Equipment Manager, said he finds the state-of-the-art automated GPS tracking system to be an extremely valuable tool. SGL Constructors is the construction joint venture of Skanska, Granite and Lane.

“This system is the easiest way to manage our many assets,” Picone said. “In the past, we did everything manually with file folders and vehicle logs.”

Picone points out that this automation is another example of how SGL and the I-4 Ultimate project is utilizing the latest technology to operate efficiently and safely.

The electronic monitoring tells equipment managers where the vehicles are, how fast they are going and whether drivers are wearing seat belts. It also records hard accelerations and abrupt stops. Those behaviors and others can be addressed to improve safety and limit wear and tear on equipment.

Additionally, if the equipment leaves a certain designated area, the system can send signals to alert managers of a possible theft.

The electronic data system lets managers know if immediate or routine maintenance is needed without someone inspecting each vehicle’s odometer and repair schedule. That is a big timesaver on a project with more than 200 vehicles and pieces of heavy equipment linked to the special GPS system.

Employee Spotlight: Samantha Perry

The I-4 Ultimate team is a collection of amazing men and women working to make the vision of this transformative project a reality. Our neighbors, family members and friends on the project are “Building a Better I-4” through hard work and determination. The I-4 Ultimate project is excited to introduce you to a valuable member of the team each month:

Area 5 EH&S Manager (Environmental, Health, and Safety Manager)
Resident of Winter Park

Q. What attracted you to working on the I-4 Ultimate project?
A. After researching the project I knew I would be exposed to many responsibilities and unique ventures that I could not pass up the opportunity.

Q. What do you like about your job?
A. I love the culture on this project. Everyone truly cares about each other and we all have each other’s back to ensure we all get to go home safely every day. We are one very big family. This project has people from all over the world and having the opportunity to learn from each of them has been priceless.

Q. Tell us about yourself?
A. I have a 2-year-old son who is my world. He motivates me to make sure that every person on this project gets to go home to their families. When I walk in the door he greets me with a hug and a kiss every day and that is something no one should ever have to miss, whether an employee on the project or a pedestrian traveling through our work zone. Any moment I am not at work I am fully devoted to my son, usually playing with cars or in the yard running around with our Labrador.

Public participation is solicited without regard to race, color, national origin, age, sex, religion, disability or family status. Persons who require special accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act or persons who require translation services (free of charge) should contact Jennifer Smith, FDOT Title VI Coordinator by phone at (386) 943-5367, or via email at If you are hearing or speech impaired, please contact us by using the Florida Relay Service, 1-800-955-8771 (TDD) or 1-800-955-8770 (Voice).