The goal of the I-4 Beyond the Ultimate program is to improve safety, mobility, and connectivity in Central Florida to the east and west of the I-4 Ultimate project. I-4 Beyond the Ultimate addresses the biggest challenges to mobility on I-4 in Volusia, Seminole, Orange, and Osceola counties. The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) oversees all design and construction for I-4 Beyond the Ultimate.
It will improve pavement, bridges, and interchanges. It will also improve aesthetics (appearance and design). In addition, the work will make significant improvements to the infrastructure to enable the collection and communication of vital traffic data. That helps support innovative technologies, such as connected vehicles (cars and trucks that communicate with each other) and self-driving cars.
The improvements will take place in various locations along approximately 40 miles of I-4 — 20 miles on each side of the I-4 Ultimate project to the east and west. I-4 Beyond the Ultimate includes Managed Lanes along the interstate, but the addition will not cause the loss of any of the freeway general-purpose lanes.
I-4 Beyond the Ultimate will consist of individual projects along I-4. Each project will have its own specific boundaries and projects will get underway as funding allows. This approach will allow FDOT to address the most pressing needs along I-4 sooner.
State and federal funding has been designated for several Beyond the Ultimate projects, with multiple diverging diamond interchanges (DDIs) coming to Central Florida over the next few years. Work began on a new DDI in summer 2021 on the interchange at I-4 and County Road (C.R.) 532 at ChampionsGate and is estimated to be complete between a year and a half to two years from the start of construction. In spring 2022 construction is scheduled to begin on a new DDI at I-4 at Daryl Carter Parkway and new entrance and exit ramps will be built to turn what is now a simple overpass into an interchange. Another DDI will begin construction at I-4 at Sand Lake Road (State Road 482) starting in 2023. Other projects will begin as funding becomes available.
The construction of an additional lane on eastbound Interstate 4 (I-4) from the end of the I-4 Ultimate project (east of State Road 434) to west of Lake Mary Boulevard and the reconstruction of the E.E. Williamson bridge over I-4 began in the summer of 2019. This project also includes the milling and resurfacing of eastbound I-4 travel lanes from the end of the I-4 Ultimate project to Lake Mary Boulevard.
Another interim construction project that began in the summer of 2019 is the milling and resurfacing of eastbound I-4 travel lanes from Lake Mary Boulevard to County Road (C.R.) 46A and from S.R. 46 to the Seminole-Volusia county line.
The PD&E study process was developed by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) in response to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969. The study helps ensure that transportation projects are developed taking into account current engineering standards, project costs, and minimizing impacts. It also seeks to engage the public throughout the study process. You can learn more about the process here.
The overall objective of the study is to develop a viable road concept that meets the purpose and need of the project while, at the same time, minimizing social, economic and environmental impacts. It also incorporates community participation. The study will also ensure the project receives approval from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), FDOT and agency partners. The results of the study will help determine the type, location, and design configuration of the I-4 Beyond the Ultimate.
FDOT is committed to continuing public outreach for the duration of design and construction. A website, social media, newsletters, surveys, meetings and presentations, as well as ongoing communication through the press, will be used to solicit feedback and keep the public informed about the status of the project and community outreach activities.