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Project Details
Work Type: Widening
Phase: PD&E
Limits: CR 721 S to CR 599/128th Avenue
Length: 8.6 miles
Study Cost: $3,000,000
Start of Current Phase: Early 2023
Est. Completion of Current Phase: Early 2025

UPCOMING PUBLIC WORKSHOP – June 11, 2024 and June 18, 2024 

FDOT invites you to an upcoming public workshop. The meeting materials are now available for viewing (see Project Documents box below). The purpose of this workshop is to share the alternatives and analysis completed to date, and to provide the public an opportunity to comment for the official workshop record.

The purpose of the study is to address traffic safety conditions on SR 70 from CR 721 S to CR 599/128th Avenue. Other goals of the project are to maintain important east-west connectivity within the regional transportation network and accommodate freight activity within this area of Highlands and Okeechobee Counties, Florida. Alternatives to be evaluated include the widening of the existing two-lane undivided roadway with 10-foot travel lanes to a four-lane divided road with 12-foot travel lanes, the addition of paved shoulders and turn lanes, and possible multi-modal improvements (i.e., shared use path) along the corridor.

Public Involvement


Here are the ways you can participate in the upcoming workshop. Materials will be the same at all events, so attending every event is not necessary. 

June 4, 2024 Workshop Materials Posted 

View all the materials below in the Project Documents box.

June 11, 2024 In-Person Event 

Indian River State College (Dixon Hendry Campus) 

2229 NW 9th Ave. 

Okeechobee, FL 34972 

5 – 7 p.m. open house 

View workshop materials including a looping video (no formal presentation), talk to the project team, and submit comments. 

June 18, 2024 Live Online Event - (Advanced registration required) 

6 – 7 p.m.
https://tinyurl.com/450334-1-SR70 You will receive a confirmation email with information about joining the workshop from a computer, tablet, or mobile device. (Note: Internet Explorer cannot be used for this event) 

Review the materials online prior to the event. Participate in an online presentation and live question & answer session with the project team. 

How to submit comments 

You may submit comments in the following ways 

  • During the live in-person event  
  • Online through the project website (use the contact box on the right) 
  • Email the project manager (david.turley@dot.state.fl.us
  • By mail: David C. Turley, P.E. 

MS 1-40

Florida Department of Transportation 

801 N. Broadway Ave 

Bartow, FL 33830 

You are able to provide written comments about the project at any time, but comments must be submitted by June 25, 2024 to be included in the record for this workshop.  You may also call the project manager (phone number to the right) if you have questions before you submit your comment. 


If you need ADA or Translation Services:
Persons who require special accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) or persons who require translation services (free of charge) should contact Cynthia Sykes, District One Title VI Coordinator by phone at (863) 519-2287 or by email at cynthia.sykes@dot.state.fl.us at least seven (7) days before the live event you plan to attend.

The Florida Department of Transportation is required to comply with various non-discrimination laws and regulations, including Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. FDOT solicits public participation without regard to race, color, national origin, age, sex, religion, disability, or family status. Anyone wishing to express concern about Title VI should contact Cynthia Sykes at the information above. 

Public Notices

This meeting was advertised according to federal and state statutes in the following places:

  • On this project website
  • Email to public officials and interested parties
  • Newsletter to local property owners near the project
  • FDOT's Public Notice website
  • Florida Administrative Code

What is a PD&E Study?

A Project Development and Environment (PD&E) Study is a phase of the Florida Department of Transportation's (FDOT) project development process. A PD&E Study assists the FDOT in determining the location, conceptual design and social, economic and environmental effects of proposed roadway and other project improvements. The process follows procedures set forth in the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 and federal and state laws and regulations. During the PD&E Study process, feasible alternatives are developed for improvement projects. These ‘Build’ alternatives are evaluated based on environmental, engineering and socioeconomic conditions, safety needs and public input. The need for additional right-of-way for improvements or stormwater will also be evaluated during the PD&E Study phase. The ‘No-Build’ alternative is evaluated throughout the study process. This ‘No-Build’ alternative leaves the existing transportation infrastructure as it is, with only routine maintenance as required for existing facilities. If the study results in a ‘Build’ alternative being selected, the project may proceed to the next phase, which is the design phase. The basic activities of a PD&E Study include:

Data Collection

The first major work effort is the collection of all available data pertaining to the study corridor including existing and planned infrastructure, existing and future land uses, drainage patterns, and environmental resources.

Alternatives Development and Analysis

Once data collection is completed, the Department develops and evaluates various alignment alternatives, including a ‘No-Build’ alternative. The ‘No-Build’ alternative assumes no improvements. The environmental impacts, social impacts and costs of these alternatives are quantified and summarized in an evaluation matrix.

Public Kickoff Meeting or Newsletter

A public kickoff meeting is held, or a newsletter is mailed, to introduce the project to the public and provide an opportunity to view and comment on the project’s need and objectives.

Alternatives Public Meeting

Combining the public input with the needs of the corridor, several improvement alternatives are developed and evaluated along with the “No-Build” alternative during the PD&E Study. This meeting presents the environmental and social impacts as well as estimated costs of the viable ‘Build’ alternatives as compared to the ‘No-Build’ alternative. The public is provided with an opportunity to view and comment on the alternatives under consideration.

Public Hearing

After all public comments are reviewed and the analysis of the alternatives has been refined, a formal public hearing is held to provide a forum for input from property owners and interested parties on the final recommendations. A final decision is not made until after the public hearing.

Final Acceptance

After the comments from the public hearing have been received, considered and addressed, the project reports will be finalized and submitted to the Office of Environmental Management for Location and Design Concept Acceptance. Once acceptance is granted, the PD&E Study phase of the project will be complete. The phases that follow the PD&E Study are design of the project, acquisition of right-of-way, if necessary, and construction of the improvements.

View Factsheet
Contact Information
PD&E Project Manager
David C. Turley, P.E.
For Media Inquiries Only
Project Documents
Project Videos
Project Images
Adjacent SR 70 project segments
Aerial view of SR 70 bridge over Slough Ditch
Aerial view of SR 70 Kissimmee River bridge
Aerial view of SR 70 roadway