Despite taking over 14 months (including many months of complete apathy by the City of Jacksonville), Metro Jacksonville's request to change the signs on I-95 downtown have finally been implemented.
Here is a Quick Update from last August's Metro Jacksonville Article:
From Metro Jacksonville Member Steve Congro to FDOT Public Relations Guru Michael Goldman, Thursday, April 03, 2008 4:33 PM
My name is Steve Congro, and I'm with a Downtown Think Tank called MetroJacksonville.com. We focus on issues affecting Downtown Jacksonville, and the surrounding areas. I had a question regarding the I-95 Northbound signage at Exit 350A.
The sign list four roads (Riverside Ave, Mary St, Main St, and Prudential Drive). It appears that this sign was created around the ramps that existed for the original Acosta Bridge and the Main St Bridge before the northbank Ramps were added. The reason that I say this is because the signs are very misleading for a driver coming downtown. For one, there is no way to get directly to Main St from the Ramp; you get dumped out on Ocean from the Main St Bridge. In addition, nowhere on these signs does it mention Water St or Broad St (until you are actually on the Acosta bridge). These are the roads that two of the three lanes of the bridge will put you out on. Finally, other than the sign a mile from the exit, the names of the bridges are nowhere to be found, so someone at the exit who was told to take the Acosta bridge from a friend will have no idea where to go.
Is there any plan to replace or revise this sign?
Thanks for your time, and feel free to check out our site at MetroJacksonville.com.
From FDOT's Tom Cavin to FDOT's Don Drury, Wednesday, April 09, 2008 2:29 PM
I like the idea. I have always thought these signs should state Main Street Bridge and Acosta Bridge.
Tom Cavin, P.E.
From FDOT's Jim Scott to Don Drury, No Time Stamp
I like the plan. Let's try for the new signs. If Tom agrees with this scheme, please forward to Rick Ball to get concurrence from the City. After the City approves we will get back in touch with Mr. Congro.
Jim Scott, P.E.
From Don Drury to COJ's Richard Ball, Wednesday, April 16, 2008 5:49 PM
Please see the e-mail below from Mr. Steve Congro, he has asked FDOT to review the existing signing on I-95 NB for Exit 350A. This is the exit to either the Main St Bridge or Acosta Bridge into downtown. Our review found we could adjust the wording on three existing overhead sign assemblies. I have attached what we can do to help clear up any misunderstandings as to where the Main St & Acosta Bridges are located from Exit 350A. He was also concerned about having the message of Main Street, which you cannot directly reach from the Main Street Bridge, it's either Ocean, Bay or Newnan Street's.
Basically if we change any of our existing signs we will add the Main St Bridge and Acosta Bridge to the three locations and we will change Main Street to Ocean Street if the City of Jacksonville agrees that Ocean Street is the correct street to sign on I-95 northbound at Exit 350A.
From Richard Ball to JEDC Executive Director Ron Barton, Thursday, April 17, 2008 1:42 PM
Does the JEDC have any preferences in this issue.
The point that you end up on Ocean St. not Main St. if you are northbound across the Main St. bridge makes a lot of sense to me but I would like your input before I reply to FDOT.
Three Months Pass......
From Richard Ball to Ron Barton, Monday, July 07, 2008 8:31 AM
FDOT is pushing me for an answer to this.
I still need JEDC's input.
From Ron Barton To JEDC's Paul Crawford and Eric Lindstrom, Monday, July 07, 2008 10:01 AM
I guess DOT wants to do something. Can you guys figure out the best approach for downtown. Paul you looked at some of this stuff earliest when it first came out.
From Paul Crawford to Richard Ball, Ron Barton and Eric Lindstrom Monday, July 08, 2008 11:28 AM
Attached are my recommendations for the modifications to the FDOT signage approaching downtown.
(Click HERE to download the attachment to this message)
(Unfortunately, you will find that nowhere in the attached document is there anything regarding the original topic; the signage for exit 350A from I-95 into downtown.)
Now, let's fast forward to 2009:
From FDOT's Don Drury to Metro Jacksonville Member Steve Congro, Wednesday, April 09, 2008 2:29 PM
We have received approval from the City of Jacksonville to change the I-95 signs for exit 350A to include the Acosta Bridge, Main Street Bridge and Ocean Street.
We will forward a work request to our maintenance office next week for them to review and comment on this work. However, we do not know at this time whether they have the funds to complete such a large project, our estimate is $58,075. We will let you and the city of Jacksonville know as soon as we know.
I would like to thank you and your group for your inquiry about providing better guidance to our users as they enter downtown Jacksonville. These improvements when completed will benefit many.
Please call me if you have any questions.
Finally, as of May 5th (429 days later), Metro Jacksonville's effort finally came to fruition.
The initial article was published August 8th, 2008: