DISASTER CONTINUES AS “BRIDGES” HOMEOWNER COMPLAINS ABOUT TRAFFIC LAWS, WHILE COUNTY WORKERS OVERSEEING FAILED PROJECT OFFER EXCUSES, BUT NO QUICK FIX.
BY: ANDREW COLTON | Editor and Publisher
BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) (Copyright © 2022 MetroDesk Media, LLC) — BocaNewsNow.com’s exclusive reporting on the failed $10M Lyons Road expansion project that spans West Boca Raton and West Delray Beach was a factor in an intense, major meeting held Monday afternoon in the West Delray Beach community of “The Bridges.”
During the meeting sponsored by The Bridges Homeowners Association, Palm Beach County Commissioner Maria Sachs slammed G.L. Homes for overbuilding the area without first expanding Lyons Road. Lyons Road, once a secondary road used by few, became a major thoroughfare over the past few years as G.L. Homes built The Bridges, Boca Bridges, Seven Bridges, and Lotus.
“The Palm Beach County Commission should have never permitted the over-development of the area,” she said. “(G.L. Homes) could have never broken ground if we didn’t give them permission to do so.”
The several thousand new homes brought several thousand homeowners now using Lyons multiple times a day — some estimate 8,000 to 10,000 cars now drive on Lyons between Clint Moore and Atlantic during a routine 24 hour period. And that estimate may be low.
Palm Beach County was in the midst of widening Lyons Road when contractors found unmapped utility lines under the road in the spring. That led to a virtual work stoppage as the project was halted so it could be redesigned. But instead of removing the barricades and lane restrictions put in place for what should have been a six month lane shift, Palm Beach County left the barricades and restrictions in place. The result: massive traffic tie-ups, accidents, and frustration.
One Bridges homeowner expressed anger that she has to wait to turn left out of the Bridges while drivers leaving Seven Bridges turn right. While motorists exiting Seven Bridges have the right of way, the situation has become confusing and dangerous as Palm Beach County altered traffic light patterns, actual lane locations, and the traffic flow. The same woman also complained about traffic lights that seemingly benefit motorists leaving Lotus and Boca Bridges — just south of The Bridges and Seven Bridges.
Another Bridges homeowner — who didn’t blame anyone for traffic laws — acknowledged that motorists leaving Seven Bridges have the right of way to turn right, but questioned why Palm Beach County made the temporary intersection so dangerous. There have been multiple serious crashes over the past few months. There was no legitimate answer. The only consistent theme from Palm Beach County transportation department officials: the work will resume in early September, and likely last another eight months. The same officials cautioned that work could take longer, as supplies and workers are now more difficult to obtain.
The meeting was held at “The Bridges” and live-streamed on YouTube. Commissioner Maria Sachs, while sounding compassionate, also sounded political. She empathized and promised “safety first,” but as of 5:30 p.m., had offered no solution to expedite the project, would not suggest halting the project and returning lanes to normal as school resumes and traffic loads increase, or demand that the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office place deputies on Lyons for traffic control during peak hours.
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