Preliminary construction for Brooks Bridge Replacement Project starts this month, major construction in Spring 2023

The Brooks Bridge Replacement Project is set to begin this Spring, with preliminary construction activities starting this month.

  • The project, which is being led by the Florida Department of Transportation, aims to replace the current four-lane bridge with a new six-lane structure across Santa Rosa Sound.

According to Kohen Johns Brannon, with the Florida Department of Transportation, the $171-million project includes relocating utilities on and around Brooks Street, U.S. 98, and the south side of Publix at the Shoppes at Paradise Point shopping center.

  • In the coming weeks, crews will also be working to realign Brooks Street, from Perry Avenue to the Brooks Bridge, to provide space for the new westbound structure.

Other activities involved in the project include:

  • Drainage improvements
  • The relocation of above and underground utilities
  • The installation of erosion control devices
  • Lane shifts
  • The finalization of necessary permits

The early construction efforts will begin beneath the west side of the current bridge in Fort Walton Beach before moving to the east end of the structure.

It is currently estimated that the project will be completed by mid-2027. However, as with any construction project, it is important to note that all activities are weather-dependent and may be delayed or rescheduled in the event of inclement weather.

The Brooks Bridge serves as a major transportation corridor for the area and its replacement is expected to greatly benefit the community. The new six-lane structure will provide additional capacity to meet the growing needs of the region and improve safety for all users.

  • Drivers, pedestrians, bicyclists, and nearby properties may be impacted by the construction and associated traffic shifts.
  • The Florida Department of Transportation advises all individuals to use caution when traveling through a work zone, particularly at night, and to watch for construction workers and equipment entering and exiting the roadway.

In a press release, Brannon said, “We understand that construction can be inconvenient, but we are committed to completing this project as efficiently and effectively as possible. We appreciate the patience and cooperation of the community as we work to improve the infrastructure in Okaloosa County.”

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