It’s been nearly 20 years in the making, but the long-anticipated interchange at I-75 and Overpass Rd. is officially opened.
The Florida Department of Transportation announced Wednesday morning that the project, which began in October 2020, was now open to traffic
The interchange, at the new Exit #282 off I-75, is located halfway between S.R. 54 (Exit 279) and S.R. 52 (Exit 285) and provided drivers in and around Wesley Chapel another option to enter and exit S.R. 75.
According to FDOT, the new interchange will address the projected increase in traffic in the area and “significantly” reduce the volume of traffic on S.R.s 52 and 54.
The diamond-shaped interchange includes a flyover ramp for those traveling west on Overpass Rd. and seeking access onto southbound I-75. It is expected to be a boon for the area, which is growing quickly and already includes Cypress Creek High School on the west side and to the east the Connected City and neighboring Villages of Pasadena Hills projects, which upon completion could add roughly 40,000 homes and hundreds of thousands of square feet of commercial projects to the area.
The Overpass Interchange project, first studied in 2005, cost $64.6 million. It first received federal approval in 2014 and overcame a roadblock in 2017, when then-Governor and current Senator Rick Scott vetoed $15 million for the project. However, the request was re-inserted into the budget in 2018 and spared another veto, pushing the project forward.
The interchange is only part of the project, which includes the widening of Overpass Rd. from two lanes to four lanes between the interstate and Old Pasco Rd. to the west and six lanes (including two auxiliary lanes) between the interstate and Boyette Rd. to the east.
Also, Blair Dr. has been realigned to connect with Old Pasco Rd., and McKendree Rd. has been realigned to connect with Boyette Rd.
A 10-foot wide sidewalk has been constructed on the north side of Overpass Rd (next to the westbound traffic lanes), and a 6-foot wide sidewalk is open on the south side (next to the eastbound traffic lanes).