i-4 Ultimate

February 2019

* Exit Point for WB I-4 Ramp to Conroy Rd. Changing on March 5
* Newest Virtual Drive Shows Improvements to Eastbound Maitland Blvd.
* Current I-4 Interchange Configurations Newest Addition to Online Map
* Thousands of Students Explore Transportation Construction Industry
* New I-4 Interchanges at Conroy Road and Florida’s Turnpike Will Improve Traffic Flow
* Employee Spotlight: Arnie David

Exit Point for WB I-4 Ramp to Conroy Rd. Changing on March 5


I-4 Ultimate crews are scheduled to open a temporary ramp configuration on the morning of Tuesday, March 5, that will combine traffic from the westbound Interstate 4 (I-4) on-ramp from John Young Parkway and the exit ramp to Conroy Road.

The exit point for the westbound I-4 ramp to Conroy Road (Exit 78) will shift nearly a half-mile sooner. Traffic will exit westbound I-4 to a temporary two-lane ramp system.

The westbound I-4 entrance ramp from John Young Parkway will connect to the temporary ramp system. Motorists seeking to enter westbound I-4 from John Young Parkway will travel on the lengthened ramp for approximately one-half mile before merging with westbound I-4 traffic. Motorists must be prepared to merge onto westbound I-4 to avoid continuing to Conroy Road.

The temporary configuration is necessary to create a safe work space for construction crews to continue building the new westbound I-4 travel lanes.


Newest Virtual Drive Shows Improvements to Eastbound Maitland Blvd.


Curious what the finished elevated lanes of Maitland Boulevard (State Road 414) might look like before they are completed? Check out the I-4 Ultimate project’s newest virtual drive of eastbound Maitland Boulevard.

The produced video uses a recently completed 3-D model of the Interstate 4 (I-4) and Maitland Boulevard interchange. The I-4 Ultimate project team is building several 3-D digital models to immerse motorists in a realistic drive down the completed corridor and to show new traffic movements before they open to traffic.

The first produced animation using the new 3-D models depict how motorists will be able to exit eastbound I-4 to Maitland Boulevard or Sandspur Road when all improvements have been built.

FDOT creates the 3-D models using a collection of engineering plans, scenes from Google Earth, aerial photography and topographic maps.

In addition to several interchanges on the I-4 Ultimate project, FDOT is producing 3-D models for several design segments of I-4 Beyond the Ultimate. Subscribe to the I-4 Ultimate and Beyond YouTube channel to be notified when new 3-D model videos are released.


Current I-4 Interchange Configurations Newest Addition to Online Map


The newest addition to the I-4 Ultimate project’s online construction map is an interactive display of the current ramp configurations for each Interstate 4 (I-4) interchange along the 21-mile project.

The current interchange configurations map is a helpful tool to view recent changes to I-4 entrance and exit ramps. As I-4 Ultimate crews build new travel lanes or need to open new work zones to continue construction, the entrance and exit ramps are often temporarily reconfigured, moved, or closed.

The project is currently averaging more than a ramp shift a week. While some changes can be minor, others require motorists to be alert for an entirely new traffic pattern. For example, during the first week of March, the configurations of the following three ramps are scheduled to change: westbound I-4 exit to Conroy Road, westbound I-4 on-ramp from John Young Parkway and westbound I-4 on-ramp from Amelia Street.

The I-4 Ultimate team regularly communicates changes in roadway configurations to private mapping and navigation companies; however, their implementation of the changes is not always immediate. Furthermore, many motorists do not routinely update their in-car navigation systems. The I-4 Ultimate online map of current I-4 interchange configurations is provided as a supplemental resource.

The I-4 Ultimate online construction map is also a helpful tool to view scheduled lane, ramp and road closures on the project, renderings and maps of future I-4 interchange configurations, live cameras on the project, and aerial photos of construction progess.


Thousands of Students Explore Transportation Construction Industry


About 3,000 junior and senior high school students got a taste of the transportation construction industry in January at the 19th annual Central Florida Construction Career Days event.

The event, hosted by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) and its industry partners, helps teenagers explore, and build a strong foundation for a successful future in transportation construction. The hope is that the students become interested and one day work on infrastructure endeavors such as the I-4 Ultimate or I-4 Beyond the Ultimate projects.

“Construction Career Days is a great opportunity to introduce tomorrow’s potential tradespeople to today’s roadbuilding industry,” said Geoff Scales, Senior Project Manager with Hubbard Construction Company and co-chair of the event.

Junior and senior high school students from more than 70 Central Florida schools throughout nine counties attended Construction Career Days to learn about the many available opportunities and experience some skilled trades firsthand.

Engineers and skilled trade workers from local firms, technical schools, and FDOT held more than 30 interactive learning labs. Students even got a chance to try their hand at operating heavy equipment and simulators.

Construction opportunities represented through the program are not minimum-wage jobs, but rather steady careers. “These are careers that you can grow with. If you’ve got the ambition and the drive, you can build a career in the construction industry and go far,” Scales added.

Students who attended the event may apply for a $1,000 scholarship. Schools, sponsors and volunteers interested in participating in the 2020 event can visit CCDFL.org.


New I-4 Interchanges at Conroy Road and Florida’s Turnpike Will Improve Traffic Flow

1 Adding separate auxiliary lanes connecting the westbound I-4 entrance ramp from Conroy Road to the westbound I-4 exit ramp to Florida’s Turnpike.
2 Adding an extra lane to the westbound I-4 exit ramp to Florida’s Turnpike.
3 Adding an extra lane to the eastbound I-4 entrance ramp from Florida’s Turnpike.
4 Florida’s Turnpike Enterprise is constructing direct connect access to and from the Express Lanes during the I-4 Ultimate project.

Motorists traveling on Interstate (I-4) to the busy retail area surrounding Conroy Road or those looking to head north or south on Florida’s Turnpike will find an improved and safer roadway when the I-4 Ultimate project is complete. Upcoming changes will create more efficient merging and better traffic flow.

The Conroy Road bridge over I-4 is relatively new, having been built about a decade ago. This bridge was designed and constructed with future I-4 expansion in mind. The lengthened bridge over I-4 provides ample space underneath for new travel lanes.

There are, however, plenty of other new features currently under construction in the area.

A three-lane roadway adjacent to westbound I-4 between Conroy Road and Florida’s Turnpike will serve as an exit ramp from I-4 to the Turnpike and an entrance ramp from Conroy Road to I-4. Moving the ramp system away from the westbound mainline will greatly reduce weaving between the ramps and the interstate. Motorists exiting westbound I-4 to Florida’s Turnpike will exit just under the Conroy Road bridge and enter the adjacent ramp system. Motorists entering westbound I-4 from Florida’s Turnpike and Conroy Road will follow the ramp system to just beyond the Turnpike bridge.

An extra lane is being added to the exit ramp from westbound I-4 to Florida’s Turnpike and to the eastbound I-4 entrance ramp from Florida’s Turnpike. Florida’s Turnpike Enterprise also is designing and constructing direct connect access ramps from the westbound I-4 Express Lanes and to the eastbound I-4 Express Lanes.


Employee Spotlight: Arnie David
Operations and Maintenance within Construction Oversight Services

As progress on the I-4 Ultimate project continues and motorists look forward to driving the highly anticipated, signature corridor of the future, Arnie David stays focused on the interstate lanes of today – the ones that commuters and families use during construction.

Several days a week, he monitors the structural health of the highway lanes on Interstate 4 (I-4) and on the side streets near interchanges and any detours. He checks the condition of current guardrails, traffic striping, temporary detours, pavement, drainage, landscaping, and lighting. The challenges and crucial nature of his role is rewarding enough to keep him from even thinking about returning to his former career in the hospitality industry – no matter the heat or humidity.

“I enjoyed my former career, but I won’t ever go back to an inside job,” said David, who works in the Construction Oversight Services team on the I-4 Ultimate project. “I like being outdoors. I like seeing big projects get built, and I like being able to show my four kids and my grandchild the results.”

David had been working for a large hotel corporation for 17 years as a manager in guest services and housekeeping when he began to miss the construction career he had first intended to seek. Having come to the U.S. from the Philippines as a 19-year-old hoping to improve himself, he found a job in a hotel while starting classes in civil engineering at the University of Central Florida.

His supervisors were impressed and convinced him to switch his field of study to the hospitality trades. David enjoyed his hotel work and building his career. “But I kept thinking about my father’s advice that ‘if you’re excited about getting up to go to work, then you’re on the right path.’”

Looking for a change, he contacted friends who told him about the need for construction oversight monitors. So, he made the transition, received on-the-job training, earned all his professional certifications, and now has been working in his second career for almost 20 years.

Along the way, he helped monitor runway construction at Orlando International Airport, two phases of SunRail construction and now I-4 Ultimate. He is an employee of HNTB, which provides construction and engineering services for FDOT on the 21-mile interstate project.

“I’m proud to be part of the I-4 Ultimate project. People will love it when they see how much better, safer and more convenient it’s going to be,” David said. “It’s also nice to know that my grandkids will continue to reap the benefits of the roads I worked on long after I’m no longer around.”