The Coastal Star

Along the Coast: First ramp opens at Spanish River interchange

By Steve Plunkett

    Interstate 95’s new northbound exit ramp to Spanish River Boulevard is open.
    The ramp, which begins after vehicles have passed under Spanish River Boulevard and then loops south, brings drivers to new signals at the entrance of Florida Atlantic University.
    Motorists began using the ramp Sept. 26, said Andi Pacini, spokeswoman for the Florida Department of Transportation’s $69 million interchange project, and more ramps will open this month.
     “We are targeting an October open for the new southbound ramp movements, weather permitting,” Pacini said. Construction crews have been working on the interchange since January 2014. The Spanish River connection will be Boca Raton’s fifth entrance/exit on I-95.
    Inclement weather added seven weeks to the construction schedule before Hurricane Irma hit.
    Farther north, improvements to the interchange at Woolbright Road in Boynton Beach also lag. Although the southbound exit ramp at Woolbright Road from I-95 reopened fully Sept. 21, on Sept. 20, Florida Department of Transportation workers noticed erosion from Irma’s rains and closed the westbound exit lane.
    The Woolbright Road project is one of five interchange projects that are ongoing. Work there was supposed to be finished in December, but the bad weather from Irma likely will delay the deadline.
    “Current contract time runs through November of this year, but we expect that date will be extended due to holidays and weather days,” Pacini said.
    — Jane Smith contributed to this story

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