i-4 Ultimate

January 2022

* By the Numbers: I-4 Ultimate
* A Steel Blossom Blooms in Maitland
* I-4 Ultimate Streamlines Travel Between Conroy Road, Florida’s Turnpike
* Take a Reader Survey About New Managed Lanes on Interstate 4

By the Numbers: I-4 Ultimate


During construction, I-4 Ultimate crews hauled in mountains of dirt to fill uneven landscapes and build tall embankments.

They have hammered miles and miles of steel pilings deep into the ground as part of the huge foundations needed to support new bridges and overpasses. And they have built dozens of acres of new decking for bridges downtown.

The epic effort to improve safety, mobility, and connectivity in the region has been so massive that it’s hard to grasp what some of the numbers actually mean. What do 9.5 million cubic yards of dirt look like? How many trucks would be needed to carry it?

Comparisons with commonplace items can help make the numbers easier to grasp. The real-life context still highlights the monumental work that went into Florida’s largest-ever infrastructure project.

9.5 million

Dump trucks hauled in 9.5 million cubic yards of dirt to level off low areas and build embankments. Lined up bumper-to-bumper, the fleet of dump trucks needed to haul it all at once would stretch 2,400 miles along I-10 from Jacksonville, Florida, to Los Angeles.

1.3 million

1.3 million linear feet of pile (similar to long steel beams) were driven deep into the ground to support bridges, overpasses, ramps, and other structures. Placed end-to-end, those piles would stretch about 240 miles – from downtown Orlando to about 20 miles north of Tallahassee, or from downtown Tampa all the way south to Key West.

2.25 million

In the downtown Orlando area, crews built 2.25 million square feet of concrete decks for new bridges and overpasses. That’s about 50 acres worth of decking – enough to cover nearly 30 soccer fields.


New concrete lanes should last about 50 years without major repairs. That’s about five times longer than the average lifespan of cars today. That means lanes completed in 2021 may not need heavy-duty maintenance until 2071.

That’s a half-century of use – a rare achievement that stands out in an era when many computers and TVs are not expected to last a decade.


A Steel Blossom Blooms in Maitland

Click on image above to view video.

At 18 feet high, “Blossom” is a giant – but graceful – work of outdoor art representing the flower of the orange tree, once the lifeblood of the local economy and the center of daily life in old Maitland.

While the days of citrus farming in Maitland are long gone, the tall, steel blossom, recently installed at Fennell Street and Keller Road, honors the past while building community spirit for the future.

“Blossom” is the vision of sculptors Jennifer Madden and Jeffrey Reed, a husband-and-wife team who were selected over 130 other entries. Together, they designed and built the piece, which includes informative plaques and places to sit beside the large petals.

“Hopefully, it will become a place that the community can gather, and you can walk your dog, or you can meet a neighbor, or you can meet a stranger,” Madden said. “That's really the goal, that strangers have a place to meet.”

The large sculpture is the latest example of public art commissioned by the I-4 Ultimate Art Endowment Program. The $1.5 million initiative funds permanent art installations that highlight cities and counties along the I-4 Ultimate corridor.

Madden and her husband Reed, who are from Richmond, California, near San Francisco, have an impressive portfolio of public art. Their latest creation features pulsing lights and a rotating centerpiece within a circle of giant petals, all intended to evoke a sense of magic.

“The mystical, magical side leads to wonder, which leads to respect,” Reed said. “We lean towards telling a story and finding the beauty in a place and an identity.”

The sculpture captures a moment of transformation – that twinkling instant when germination changes a flower into fruit. It’s an apt display for an Orange County community that continues to evolve.

“I hope people will come away with a little more knowledge about the history of the orange in this area and Maitland,” Madden said. “And that they will feel a little more pride in their community for having, hopefully, a piece of art that they love, and they drive by every day.”


I-4 Ultimate Streamlines Travel Between Conroy Road, Florida’s Turnpike


The I-4 Ultimate improvement project has made significant enhancements to I-4 between Florida’s Turnpike and Conroy Road. Three additional lanes have been added between the two nearby interchanges, reducing weaving as westbound motorists enter at Conroy Road and travel towards the turnpike. Traffic buildup has been further eased by new lanes added to ramps coming on and off Florida’s Turnpike.

These enhancements also serve to prepare the Florida’s Turnpike interchange for the upcoming I-4 Express, and the direct access ramps between Florida’s Turnpike and I-4 Express.

View this handout for more details about the completed improvements. For more information on I-4 Express, visit i4express.com.


Take a Reader Survey About New Managed Lanes on Interstate 4

Take a Reader Survey. 

As Central Florida prepares for the new I-4 Express lanes, which will give motorists another option for using Interstate 4 (I-4) in the Orlando area, it’s informative to know what motorists think about the new choice, now called I-4 Express.

This brief, anonymous survey will help the I-4 Ultimate team understand what motorists and residents already know about the new lanes as the opening of I-4 Express draws near.

Skip to survey questions or read a quick overview.

Brief Background
The new managed lanes of I-4 Express will give motorists the option of using dynamically tolled lanes for more reliable travel times.

Dynamically tolled means that the toll rate will rise and fall with the volume of traffic in the non-tolled, general use lanes. Toll prices will be clearly displayed on electronic signs along the interstate.

The tolled lanes (two in each direction) are in the middle of the newly rebuilt I-4 Ultimate corridor. They are additional lanes. The I-4 Ultimate project included completely rebuilding all six non-tolled, general use lanes along with building or significantly improving 15 interchanges and 140 bridges and overpasses.