Traffic delays on I-275 expected to continue

File photo (WFLA)

TAMPA, FL (WFLA) – Delays on Interstate 275 from the Howard Frankland Bridge into downtown Tampa are expected to continue and won’t abate for another four weeks, a spokesman with the Florida Department of Transportation said.

The delays are caused by a new traffic pattern on northbound I-275 that was put into place a couple of weeks ago. It has caused drivers to be late for work, school and appointments.

“A lot of red lights. Brake lights!” said Steve Escobar when describing the scene on the bridge on weekday mornings.

The delays come after workers removed an auxiliary lane needed for additional construction.

“We converted an auxiliary lane into a thru-lane, so that cuts down the capacity a little bit and definitely cuts down on the space and time people have to merge,” said FDOT spokesman John McShaffrey.

The stretch of highway has shrunk from four lanes to three. But, by mid-February, a new fourth lane will open and cut down on the backup. Until then, FDOT officials said the traffic woes will continue.

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