by Steve Martin
Now that the referendum has passed, the next steps are for the county to purchase the rail corridor, design the trail, and begin construction. The following very preliminary timeline information is based on a presentation by Carolyn Brown, then head of the county’s Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources department, to the Board of County Commissioners on March 14, 2018. Over the next few months county staff will doubtless be refining the plan and this page will be updated as we get more information.
Northern Extension to Sarasota
November 2018 – April 2019
Due diligence period. Before buying the land the county looks at possible environmental issues, leases, contracts, encroachments onto the rail property, etc,
County staff begins developing a detailed project plan.
County bonds are issued and rail corridor is purchased.
Design work begins.
Additional bonds are issued to pay for construction.
Construction begins on the Phase 2 segment of the extension into downtown Sarasota (see map below).
Fiscal Year 2022 – 2023
$7.5M in SunTrail money from the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) becomes available for Phase 1 construction (see map below).
Construction begins on the Phase 1 segment of the extension.
Connector to North Port
No timeline information is available at this time. The next step will be for county and North Port officials to discuss and agree upon a course of action to determine the best route to North Port.
As noted above, this information is very tentative at this early point in the planning. This page will be updated as we get more information.
Aerial Photo Credit: Clip from Sarasota County video.