Central Florida’s first diverging diamond interchange (DDI) just opened in Viera on Interstate 95 (I-95) in early July.
The innovative design offers a nearby, real-life example of what is planned for several interchanges along the I-4 Beyond the Ultimate project.
The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) built the new interchange in Brevard County to alleviate traffic congestion around I-95 at Viera Boulevard and improve safety for motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians.
FDOT’s District Five, which oversees both the Brevard project and the I-4 Ultimate and I-4 Beyond the Ultimate projects, selected the diverging diamond design, a configuration that has proven successful elsewhere in Florida and around the nation.
Several DDIs are planned for interchanges in the I-4 Beyond project. The first ones will be built at the Sand Lake Road (State Road 482) and Daryl Carter Parkway interchanges to address congestion in those very busy and growing areas.
The DDI lessens the likelihood of crashes by temporarily switching drivers to the opposite side of the road. That way, vehicles can make left turns onto interstates without worrying about crossing in front of oncoming traffic.
Though differing from the typical roadway arrangement, the driving paths of a DDI are easy to follow. To drive through a DDI on a local road, proceed through the traffic light and continue in your lane, as it shifts to the left side of the road. As you drive on the left side, simply turn left onto the entrance ramp and merge onto the highway. You do not have to cross in front of oncoming traffic. Those who don’t need to turn left onto the interstate will be guided back to their usual side of the roadway.
This improvement increases the efficiency of the interchange, allowing more vehicles to enter and exit the interstate. It also reduces the number of traffic signal phases from four to two, so lights stay green longer, and more vehicles can travel through the interchange. Additionally, the DDI increases safety because it reduces the number of vehicle-to-vehicle conflict points, which decreases the likelihood and severity of crashes.
More information about the new DDI in Viera is available to view here.