I-4 Beyond The Ultimate

March 2022

* Work Zones Are a Sign to Slow Down
* I-4 Express Is Now Open
* FDOT Open House Previews Future I-4 Improvements in Orange County
* Central Florida Commuters Have Options

Work Zones Are a Sign to Slow Down


The week of April 11 is National Work Zone Awareness Week, which encourages safe driving through highway work zones.

During National Work Zone Awareness Week, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) is reminding everyone of the importance of paying attention as they approach and drive through work zones so that both motorists and roadway workers remain safe. Drivers are urged to take note of reduced speed limits, eliminate distractions, and be watchful for roadway workers and their equipment. This year’s National Work Zone Awareness Week theme is “Work zones are a sign to slow down.”

In 2019, 842 people were killed in 762 fatal work zone crashes, according to the most recent data available from workzonesafety.org. Of the 842 fatalities, 135 were work zone workers, and the remaining killed were pedestrians, motorists, and their passengers. These stats make it all the more important for drivers to slow down and stay focused while approaching and passing through a roadway work zone.”

Remember the following tips when driving through work zones, not just during National Work Zone Awareness Week, but every day. Maintaining a safe speed can improve driving conditions for everyone.

Adjust your Speed — Traveling 10 mph above the posted work zone speed limit only shaves less than three minutes off a 20-mile trip and carries a minimum fine of $200, plus court fees.

Don’t Tailgate — More than half of all work zone crashes are rear-end collisions. Passenger vehicles traveling at 50 mph require 300 feet of stopping distance on dry roads. A loaded tractor-trailer needs 450 feet to come to a complete stop.

Pay Attention — Traveling at the posted speed limit allows motorists more time to recognize and respond to the changes in the roadway. Work zone environments are constantly changing. Travel lanes may be different from the last time you drove through the area. Added distractions like texting and talking on the phone, eating, and drinking, or adjusting the radio and navigation system divert your attention from the primary task of driving.

When you see orange barrels, maintain a safe speed, pay attention, and put your phone away. Keep the men and women who maintain and build our roads safe, as well as you and your passengers.


I-4 Express Is Now Open


Central Florida motorists have a new transportation option. With infrastructure construction of the I-4 Ultimate project complete, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) opened the managed lanes, known locally as I-4 Express, to motorists on Saturday, February 26.

I-4 Express currently has an introductory rate of 50 cents per tolling segment. Traveling the entire length of I-4 Express will cost $3.50 eastbound and $3.00 westbound during the introductory period.

Following the introductory rate, toll pricing will be adjusted based on traffic volumes in I-4 Express to help manage congestion. Pricing will not be a fixed rate and will vary based on the number of vehicles using I-4 Express. The current toll rate is displayed on overhead electronic signs in advance of each entrance. Nonstop electronic tolling enables motorists to pay using an active, properly mounted SunPass or other Florida-accepted transponders. No cash or TOLL-BY-PLATE options are available. For more information, please visit i4express.com.

Types of managed lanes used across the U.S. include reversible lanes, high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes, and express lanes, and they are designed to address highway congestion. I-4 Express is FDOT’s approach to managing congestion on Interstate 4 (I-4) and includes two dedicated lanes in each direction of I-4 to provide motorists another reliable transportation option to travel around Central Florida.

I-4 Express, which extends from just west of Kirkman Road (State Road (S.R.) 435) in Orange County to just east of S.R. 434 in Seminole County, is separated from the rest of traffic by a concrete barrier wall with limited access points to support longer trips.

Motorists can use the interactive map at i4express.com/plan-your-trip before getting behind the wheel to see where to enter and exit I-4 Express based on their destination.

The Department reminds all road users to be mindful of the speed limit and focus attention on driving. During emergencies, whether in the general use lanes or I-4 Express, use the shoulders and wait for first responders. Road Rangers, who can be reached by dialing *347 (*FHP), will also be available to assist first responders as well as make minor mechanical repairs. Before heading out, drivers can visit FL511.com or use the Florida 511 Mobile App for important I-4 traffic information and incident alerts.


FDOT Open House Previews Future I-4 Improvements in Orange County


More than 110 Central Florida residents attended the Florida Department of Transportation’s (FDOT’s) open house to learn about upcoming improvements along Interstate 4 (I-4) in Orange County, including the Sand Lake Road (State Road (S.R.) 482) interchange, Daryl Carter Parkway partial interchange improvements, and extensions to I-4 managed lanes. Many attendees visited the open house in person on February 10 at the Rosen Event Center in Orlando, near where the work will take place, while dozens of others attended virtually through GoToWebinar.

The purpose of these projects is to provide operational and safety improvements to the I-4 corridor in southern Orange County. The public meeting was held to present information and receive community feedback on the upcoming projects, which include:

  • Reconstructing the I-4 general use lanes and extending I-4 from west of the Sand Lake Road and I-4 interchange to the end of the I-4 Ultimate project, west of Kirkman Road (S.R. 435).
  • Reconstructing the I-4 and Sand Lake Road interchange into a diverging diamond interchange (DDI).
  • Adding a single, buffer-delineated westbound managed lane extension from west of Central Florida Parkway to west of the Sand Lake Road and I-4 interchange.
  • Reconfiguring the Daryl Carter Parkway overpass as a DDI and constructing new I-4 exits from both directions to Daryl Carter Parkway, as well as a new eastbound I-4 entrance ramp.
  • Adding a single, buffer-delineated westbound managed lane extension from west of Daryl Carter Parkway to west of Central Florida Parkway.

Those in attendance were able to review preliminary design plans for the projects, watch an informational video, take part in interactive displays that illustrated the traffic movements in the new DDIs for drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians, and talk to engineers about the upcoming construction.

For more information about these projects or to review materials from the open house, visit the public meeting web page.


Central Florida Commuters Have Options


As I-4 Beyond the Ultimate construction continues in Osceola County, it’s a good time to assess your options for your daily commute.

A Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) program called reThink Your Commute promotes smart transportation solutions for Central Florida’s workforce. The program can help you find carpool or vanpool partners; plan a bus or train route; provide guidance on bicycle and pedestrian laws; and more.

There are many possible benefits when you reThink Your Commute, from decreasing stress levels to saving money. Now, when you record your carpool, vanpool, bus, rail, bike, or walk trips, or you work from home, you can earn rewards, too.

Whether you’re interested in carpooling, riding transit, or even working from home, you can find out more about your options by downloading the free mobile app or visiting reThinkYourCommute.com.