Warning for drivers as SR 70 construction at railroad crossing begins

State Road 70 Improvements

BRADENTON, Fla. (WWSB) - Construction to improve a railroad crossing in Manatee County has officially begun. Parts of State Road 70 have been closed down since midnight, and already some people who live in the area say they are worried that this closure might cause chaos.

Many drivers are getting used to a construction project on SR 70. The railroad crossing between 18th Street Boulevard E and 17th Street Court E is currently shut down, forcing drivers to look for an alternative route.

“The traffic is a bunch more than it used to be,” said Kyle Frederick, who lives nearby the construction.

His block is a detour route. He says the number of cars that go through his street quadruple since signs and barricades were put up.

“We were sitting on the porch last night, and once they closed the road at midnight, it was like the flood gates were opened,” he said. “All of the sudden on our road, there was probably 40-50 cars just flying down.”

Portion of the road were closed on Saturday, as crews began working on the rail crossing. Workers will build and resurface the crossing. As crews worked, we saw drivers turning around to find another way. Some were even confused, going through people’s driveways. This is forcing those that live here to be extra careful especially for their kids.

“We have to keep an extra eye on them. Go the extra mile, walk with them. Not let them play in the front yard by themselves,” said Joseph Platt.

Meanwhile, they say they will have to plan adding extra time to their daily commute.

“We’re going to add 15 minutes from our normal commute just to get out of our own road,” said Frederick.

They just hope, other drivers are respectful of the speed on these side roads.

“It’s kind of a cluster,” he said.

The project is expected to be completed by June 21st, weather permitting.

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