Traffic Overload: Infrastructure on Panama City Beach – Pt 2

by March 29, 2010 • 1 comment

If you read our previous article, you know we talked to Paul Casto, the Public Works Director for Panama City Beach, about beach traffic. In said article, Mr. Casto talked about the three problems with our traffic, those being the increase of people on the beach, the addition of three traffic lights and the new traffic light synchronization system east of the Hathaway bridge. We asked Mr. Casto what could be done about the traffic in the future. His answer was simple;

“We have to put a synchronization system on the beach.” That system would improve mobility on Front Beach Road, Hutchinson and Panama City Beach Parkway by keeping the signals synchronized and helping traffic flow more easily. “It is more to it than just that.” Mr. Casto went on to say. “There are other factors as well. With the CRA developments, Front Beach Road will function differently.” Soon there will be a multi-modal tram station on Front Beach Road with a dedicated tram lane that will increase overall mobility. This will decrease the number of vehicles as well as the number of people walking in front of cars.

The future of Panama City Beach infrastructure will include more artery streets that will lead out of Front Beach Road and up to Panama City Beach Parkway. Those additional streets will serve as outlets that currently don’t exist.

“The new airport should have an effect on the traffic too.” The beauty of fly markets means less cars. Less cars, mean less traffic.

The idea is simple. Enhance the infrastructure by providing more outlet streets, by offering more means of public transportation and to synchronize the traffic light system. Traffic is bad, but help is on the way.

“Traffic is as bad as I have ever seen it.” Mr. Casto said, “But we’re working to fix it, it just takes time.”

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1 Cal Withers March 30, 2010 at 10:32 am

If PC becomes a successful fly market, then it will mean more cars – not less, because you will simply have that many new visitors coming to the beach. If car rentals don’t become more reasonably priced in PC, however, it won’t matter how much SWA lowers fares because the total cost of your trip to fly & rent a car will still be prohibitive.