As the King Middle School sidewalk project wraps up, the Blackwater connector sidewalk project is starting this week.


The Blackwater connector sidewalks consist of approximately 350 linear feet of sidewalk on the north side of Jasmine Street from the Blackwater Trail eastward to Susan Street, 450 linear feet of sidewalk on the east side of Susan Street from Jasmine Street southward to Walker Street, and 220 linear feet of sidewalk on the north side of Baldwin Street from Canal Street eastward to Henry Street.


An alternate bid item for 360 linear feet of sidewalk replacement and a new stormwater inlet on the south side of Walker Street was accepted and included in the contract. This project will connect the Blackwater Heritage Trail to the sidewalks on Henry Street north of the train depot.


There will be continuous shoulder work zones and periodic lane closures in various locations along the project limits for the duration of construction. The majority of lane closures will be for less than one day.


Santa Rosa County urges motorists to observe all warning signs, barricades and traffic flagmen during construction. Citizens are also asked to stay off the sidewalks when the concrete is wet and observe all sidewalk closure signs and barricades as repairs delay progress and cost additional money.


The Blackwater Connector Sidewalk project is a joint effort with Santa Rosa County and the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT). The total project cost is $225,199.61 with Santa Rosa County contributing $115,199.61 and FDOT contributing $110,000 through the local agency program.


The funding application was initially submitted to FDOT in 2012 as a citizen initiative to connect the Blackwater Heritage Trail to Henry Street and ultimately Bagdad.


This project is combined with sidewalk projects along Glover Lane, Rosasco Street, King Street and Byrom Street in Milton. Bids were received on Oct. 17, 2019, with Chavers Construction awarded as the low bidder meeting specification. With a start date of Jan. 6, the contract time is 210 days with completion by Aug. 2, weather permitting.


Additional info will be released as the other project phases commence. For more information, contact Rebecca Jones, assistant county engineer, at 850-981-7100.