The worn-out dirt path that has unofficially connected Kinnan St. in New Tampa to Mansfield Blvd. in Meadow Pointe at the Pasco-Hillsborough county line has finally been cleared, along with the weeds, trees and bushes that have covered the 30-foot patch of land no man’s land for so long.

It’s really happening, y’all.

The two roads will be connected, maybe by as soon as the end of this month, allowing access for first responders and emergency medical vehicles only. 

For those who have hoped for years that another north-south connection would allow for easier access between Hillsborough and Pasco counties, sorry — a gate will be installed to prohibit local vehicular traffic.

Hillsborough County will pay for the new connection to be paved and equipped with a gate that Pasco County will control and pay to maintain. Hillsborough County District 2 commissioner Ken Hagan secured $250,000 for the project two years ago in an effort to get the roads connected, although he had hoped for a connection that would be open to everyone, but Meadow Pointe II residents were able to convince the Pasco Board of County Commissioners that opening the connection to everyone would bring an unsafe amount of traffic through their neighborhood.

“I’m absolutely thrilled that New Tampa will finally have emergency and pedestrian access,” Hagan says. “However, I’m hopeful that one day Pasco County will quit being parochial and obtuse and authorize full access, which is undoubtedly desperately needed.”

Pasco County Commission chair Mike Moore says there will be no need for full access, because connections are planned at the intersections of Meadow Pointe Blvd. and K-Bar Ranch Pkwy., as well as at Wyndfields Blvd. and K-Bar Ranch Pkwy., creating additional north-south roads between Pasco and Hillsborough counties.

Moore add that Meadow Pointe and Wyndfields Blvds. are more suited for additional traffic than Mansfield Blvd.

M/I Homes, the developer of New Tampa’s K-Bar Ranch, located in the city, will pay for a significant amount of the package as part of its development agreement. A new pathway for pedestrians and bicyclists will also be built as part of the project.

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