Gov. Rick Scott, state lawmakers, and Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) officials announced that they have acquired the $763 million needed for the third and final phase of the First Coast Expressway, which will connect Interstate 10 west of Jacksonville with Interstate 95, News4Jax reports.
The final piece of the highway bypass will include a new, four-lane replacement bridge for the existing two-lane Shands Bridge that carries State Road 16 across the St. Johns River.
Crews are just finishing up the first phase, a 12-mile toll road between I-10 in Jacksonville and Blanding Blvd. in Middleburg. The second phase, which will connect the highway from Blanding to Green Cove Springs, is expected to begin in January 2019. Phase Three, including the $317 million replacement bridge, is set to begin in 2023 and be completed in 2030. The entire 46-mile project is expected to cost $1.9 billion.
Tolls will begin sometime in the fall of 2018 when first phase is completely open. Cars will pay between 20 cents and 85 cents for that phase, depending on how far they travel on the initial route of the highway.