FAMU Way: Project History
[Photo: Public Works Mobility/Traffic employees Bob Becker (left) and Brian Williams (right) exchange the old Oakland Avenue street-name sign for a new FAMU Way sign.]
At the direction of the City Commission, staff embraced the challenge of designing the extension of FAMU Way from Wahnish Way to Lake Bradford Road so that it not only meets the transportation needs of the community, but so that when completed, it is one of the most beautiful roadways in Tallahassee. The City engaged area residents and FAMU University throughout the design process while also working to minimize impacts to environmentally sensitive areas, historical neighborhoods and adjacent businesses and the University.
The original extension of the FAMU Way alignment was based on citizen feedback and approved by the City Commissioner in spring of 2010. In May 2012, the City had to modify the western segment of the route due to the fact that CSX railroad would not permit an at-grade crossing included in the original plan. This new alignment routes FAMU Way on a southwesterly course west of Pinellas Street and will connect to Gamble Street and follow Gamble Street until it meets Lake Bradford Road. In addition to being a more cost-effective option, the new route was actually the most preferred by citizens who participated in a survey that was conducted to get community feedback and was later approved by the City Commission.
Since the inception of FAMU Way Extension and due to its proximity to Blueprint's Capital Cascades Trail (Segment 3), the projects have been running on parallel tracks with the goal of delivering one seamless construction contract. The combined project has been segmented into several construction phases and is sequenced so as to deliver the improvements in a westerly direction, starting with the Van Buren Pond at Martin Luther King Boulevard and ending at Lake Bradford Road. This phasing will also allow us to begin construction sooner on the easterly segments while concurrently completing the design and right-of-way acquisition associated with revising the alignment of the westerly segments.