Development Process for the Beckett Bridge Replacement Project

The schedule below is subject to change and will be updated as the project progresses.

Milestone Date
PD&E Study - Evaluation of Alternatives 2013-2016
PD&E Recommended Alternative presented at the public hearing. February 26, 2014
Public hearing results presented to the Board of County Commissioners (Board). The Board ratified and confirmed approval of the recommended/preferred alternative to be submitted to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) for final approval. April 15, 2014
Received Location and Design Concept Approval (LDCA) from FHWA January 2016
Final Design, based on approved PD&E Concepts October 2016 - Winter 2022
Community meeting planned Winter 2023
Construction planned to begin Winter 2023

Study Overview

Pinellas County conducted a Project Development and Environment (PD&E) Study between January 2012 and January 2016 to evaluate the removal, rehabilitation or replacement of the existing Beckett Bridge over Whitcomb Bayou in Tarpon Springs. The study was conducted in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) requirements and included multiple public information meetings and a Public Hearing on January 26, 2014.

On January 25, 2016, the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) issued Location and Design Concept Approval (LDCA) for the project. As such, FHWA approved the proposed location of the new bridge and the proposed conceptual design of a new two-lane single-leaf, rolling-lift bridge of a similar design to the existing bridge.

During the PD&E, the State Historic Preservation Officer (SHPO) determined that the bridge was eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places. As a result, a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) was established on February 2, 2015, between the responsible agencies and the SHPO to address the specific mitigation requirements to offset adverse impacts to the historic bridge, which will be demolished. Those mitigation requirements have been incorporated into the bridge replacement project.

With the approval of the PD&E, the existing bridge, which was originally constructed in 1924, will be replaced with a new two-lane movable bridge. The new bridge will provide improved pedestrian and bicycle facilities and will meet current design safety standards. The bridge will provide approximately 7.8 feet of vertical clearance for boats traveling under the bridge (compared to 6 feet for the existing bridge) and 25 feet of horizontal clearance between the fenders. Unlimited clearance will be provided for boats with the bridge in the open position. The proposed new bridge will be constructed within the existing County right-of-way.

The proposed bridge includes two, 10-foot-wide travel lanes with 6.5-foot shoulders that can accommodate potential future bicycle lanes. The proposed bridge will be approximately 19 feet wider than the existing bridge and include 6.5-foot-wide sidewalks on both sides, which will continue along the north side of Riverside Drive and North Spring Boulevard from Pampas Avenue to Chesapeake Drive. Sidewalk will also be constructed on the south side of North Spring Boulevard from the bridge to Venetian Court.