Largo, Florida - The sharp rattling clang drivers hear when crossing the railroad tracks at West Bay Drive just west of Seminole Boulevard is indicative of a problem with the crossing supports that surround the track.
Drivers have been frustrated by the condition of the crossing for years. The problem is finally being fixed, but it has been a long process to get this project on track.
A representative from the City of Largo told 10 News that the reason the project has taken so long to get underway is because CSX has had to complete a variety of studies to back up its theory that a concrete "tub" crossing should replace the existing rubber and metal supports used to be.
A representative from CSX confirmed that and said that the studies are extensive when it comes to implementing this type of structure, but that drivers will be glad that it will not corrode or wear away like the existing rubber tends to do over time.
While the city did pay out just shy of $20,000 in 2012 to start the design process, and budgeted the remaining money to be paid in 2013, it wasn't until January of this year that CSX completed design work. Largo's traffic study to figure out the best time to close the road followed, and construction was finally set up in May. The total cost to the city is $317,400.
West Bay Drive from Seminole Boulevard to Clearwater-Largo Road will close Friday at 10 a.m. and will remain closed to through traffic for four to six days.
Alternates for east-west travelers are Rosery Road (north of West Bay Drive), 8th Avenue S.W. (south) or Ulmerton Road (south).
Downtown Largo will be accessible from the north and south via side streets, and detours will be set up if motorists find themselves stuck inside the closure.
Tune in to 10 News at 5 a.m. and 6 a.m. for information on delays surrounding this closure.