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Date of Issue: October 06, 2005

Another fine traffic mess, Ollie!

traffic picture
Backed up
Traffic along Second Avenue West in Holmes Beach near the 52nd Street intersection is backed up because of the detour on Gulf Drive. Islander Photo: Rick Catlin

Islanders using Gulf Drive in Holmes Beach better get used to traffic delays and detours around 51st Street during the weekday for the next few days, perhaps even longer.

The Manatee County Utilities Operations Department is installing sewer pipes on Peacock Lane near 51st Street to link up with the county-owned system on Anna Maria Island.

As a result, daytime traffic during the week has been detoured around Gulf Drive between 50th Street and 51st Street, creating some delays and backups for motorists, particularly when the school day ends at Anna Maria Elementary School.

Holmes Beach Mayor Carol Whitmore said last week she was told by county officials that the detour was only until Thursday, but the county later informed her it would be finished by Friday.

But the detour signs were still up yesterday (Oct. 4), despite assurances from the county the work would be completed last week.     

Whitmore added that after the Gulf Drive detour is taken down, the county will still need to detour traffic on 51st Street from Gulf Drive to Second Avenue "on and off" until the project is completed in late December.

Efforts to reach a spokesperson for the project management office of the MCUOD to determine exactly when the Gulf Drive detour will end were unsuccessful.