The Florida-Alabama Transportation Planning Organization is in the early stages to redesign East Cervantes Street between downtown Pensacola and East Pensacola Heights, with a mission to make the busy traffic corridor more walkable and bicycle-friendly.
The plan, officially titled the East Cervantes Street Corridor Management Plan, could include building a new walking path and protected bike lanes down East Cervantes Street through Pensacola’s East Hill and East Pensacola Heights neighborhoods. The organization plans on making the vehicle traffic lanes narrower to make room for bike lanes on the street and more landscaping of the corridor.
The plans were presented at a three-day open house charrette last week, with attendees providing input on what they sought as part of a redesigned traffic corridor that spans from North 9th Avenue near the entrance to the East Side neighborhood to East Gonzalez Street in East Pensacola Heights.
Among the proposed changes are constructing protected bike lanes, new medians with landscaping, wider sidewalks, new street lighting, and new pedestrian crosswalks. Officials say the project could eventually tie into other proposed multi-use facilities, such as the proposed Scenic Highway rails-with-trails greenway along Pensacola Bay.
Consultants Atkins and Alta teamed with staff from the West Florida Regional Planning Council and various representatives from the community, including residents, businesses, Florida Department of Transportation, Escambia County, and the City of Pensacola. According to planners, nearly half of the attendees believed better bicycle access and beautification should be top priorities for the corridor.
The planning organization says the project is still in the very early planning stages and once the plan is completed, it will then be proposed for adoption by the Alabama-Florida Transportation Planning Organization. Funding of the project has not been secured.