PASCO COUNTY, FL. – Pasco County announced Friday, that Phase One of the long-anticipated Ridge Road Extension is now open.
One eastbound lane and one westbound lane opened on December 31, 2021, marking a milestone more than two decades in the making.
The 4.2-mile section of roadway connects Moon Lake Road to the Suncoast Parkway. For now, drivers will have access to the ramps heading south onto the Suncoast and west onto Ridge Road.
The two additional lanes of Phase One, the northern access ramps, and the paved pedestrian trail are all set to open in Fall 2022.
“The impact the Ridge Road Extension will have on our community is tremendous,” said Board Chair Kathryn Starkey. “This much-needed east-west roadway will help reduce traffic on other thoroughfares in Pasco County and will also serve as a critical evacuation route during hurricanes. We’re thrilled it’s finally open,” she said.
The new road includes 16 bridges and 15 upland wildlife crossings designed to maintain habitat continuity and reduce wetland impact within the Serenova Preserve by 83 percent. The project will improve evacuation time from Pasco’s coastal evacuation zone by nearly 30 percent – or more than six hours.
Construction on Phase Two of the Ridge Road Extension continues, with sections slated to be finished between 2022 and 2025. Phase Two will continue the connection 0.24 miles from the Suncoast Parkway to Sunlake Boulevard and then another 3.75 miles to U.S. Highway 41.