Florida Department of Transportation

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Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT)
Seal of the Florida Department of Transportation 2014.png
Official Seal
Agency overview
Formed 1969
Preceding Agency State Road Department (SRD)
Jurisdiction State of Florida
Headquarters Tallahassee, Florida
Agency executive Ananth Prasad, Secretary of Transportation
Website http://www.dot.state.fl.us

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) is a decentralized agency charged with the establishment, maintenance, and regulation of public transportation in the state of Florida.[1] The department was formed in 1969. It absorbed the powers of the State Road Department (SRD). The current Secretary of Transportation is Ananth Prasad.[2]

History[edit]

The State Road Department, predecessor of today's Department of Transportation, was authorized in 1915 by the Florida Legislature. For the first two years of its existence, the department acted as an advisory body to the 52 counties in the state, helping to assemble maps and other information on roads.

The 1916 Bankhead Act passed by Congress expanded the department's responsibilities and gave it the authority to: establish a state and state-aid system of roads; engage in road construction and maintenance; acquire and own land; exercise the right of eminent domain; and accept federal or local funds for use in improving roads.

The Office of Motor Carrier Compliance transitioned from the Florida Department of Transportation to the Florida Highway Patrol division of the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles on July 1, 2011.[3] The consolidation is a result of Senate Bill 2160, passed by lawmakers during the 2011 Legislative Session, and placed the commercial vehicle licensing, registrations, fuel permits, and enforcement all under the purview of DHSMV.[citation needed]

The Florida Department of Transportation building in Tallahassee.

Structure[edit]

The Florida Transportation Commission, made up of nine commissioners chosen by Florida's Governor and Legislature, provides oversight for FDOT.[4]

Each of FDOT's eight semi-autonomous districts is managed by a District Secretary. Following the 2002 legislation, the Turnpike District (now known as Florida's Turnpike Enterprise, or FTE) secretary became known as an executive director.

There are seven geographic districts plus the FTE.[5] The FTE owns and maintains 460 miles (740 km) of toll roads. The Department owns four other toll roads and bridges: the Sunshine Skyway Bridge, Alligator Alley, the Beachline East Expressway and the Pinellas Bayway System. Tolls on all Department-owned facilities are collected by Florida's Turnpike Enterprise.

In addition, the FDOT operates and manages several park and ride lots and Commuter Assistance Programs throughout the state. Most of the 7 geographic districts have a Districtwide Commuter Assistance Program.

On March 5, 2003, Governor Jeb Bush appointed José Abreu, P.E., as Secretary of Transportation.[6]

On June 27, 2005, Governor Jeb Bush appointed Denver Stutler, Jr., as Secretary of Transportation.[6] Previously, Stutler was Bush's chief of staff.

On January 2, 2007, Governor Charlie Crist appointed Stephanie Kopelousos as Interim Secretary of Transportation; she was confirmed as Secretary on April 2, 2007.[7] Previously, Kopelousos served as FDOT's Federal Programs Coordinator.

On April 18, 2011, Governor Rick Scott appointed Ananth Prasad as Secretary of Transportation.[8]

Districts[edit]

Map of FDOT Districts

Florida has seven transportation districts:[5]

District Name Headquarters Counties
Southwest Florida (District 1) Bartow[9] Charlotte, Collier, De Soto, Glades, Hardee, Hendry, Highlands, Lee, Manatee, Okeechobee, Polk, and Sarasota
Northeast Florida (District 2) Lake City[10] Alachua, Baker, Bradford, Clay, Columbia, Dixie, Duval, Gilchrist, Hamilton, Lafayette, Levy, Madison, Nassau, Putnam, St. Johns, Suwannee, Taylor, and Union
Northwest Florida (District 3) Chipley[11] Bay, Calhoun, Escambia, Franklin, Gadsden, Gulf, Holmes, Jackson, Jefferson, Leon, Liberty, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, Wakulla, Walton, and Washington
Southeast Florida (District 4) Fort Lauderdale[12] Broward, Indian River, Martin, Palm Beach, and St. Lucie
Central Florida (District 5) DeLand[13] Brevard, Flagler, Lake, Marion, Orange, Osceola, Seminole, Sumter, Volusia
South Florida (District 6) Miami[14] Miami-Dade and Monroe
West Central Florida (District 7) Tampa[15] Citrus, Hernando, Hillsborough, Pasco, and Pinellas

Notable projects[edit]

In 1954, the State Road Department completed the original Sunshine Skyway Bridge, the first fixed span to connect Saint Petersburg directly to Bradenton. This greatly shortened the travel time between the two cities, as before cars would have to either use a ferry or drive about 100 miles (160 km) around Tampa Bay. A parallel span was completed in 1971 to make the bridge Interstate standard, and it became part of I-275. After the newer, southbound span was destroyed in 1980 when the SS Summit Venture collided into it, a replacement bridge was finished in 1987.

In 1974, FDOT completed Florida's Turnpike, a 312-mile (502 km) limited access toll highway that connected the panhandle area through Orlando to Miami. The turnpike is part of an initiative to finance transportation with user fees.[16]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Florida Statutes 334.044, Department; Powers and Duties, Public Transportation, Transportation Administration.". Retrieved November 2, 2005. 
  2. ^ Meet the Secretary
  3. ^ "Motor Carrier Compliance officers become 'troopers' July 1" (PDF) (Press release). Florida Highway Patrol. June 29, 2011. Retrieved December 17, 2011. 
  4. ^ "About the Commission, Florida Transportation Commission.". Retrieved November 2, 2005. 
  5. ^ a b Florida Department of Transportation - Public Information Office (2011). "Public Information Office - District Information". Florida Department of Transportation. Retrieved 2011-10-29. 
  6. ^ a b "Florida Department of Transportation". Retrieved November 2, 2005. 
  7. ^ "Associated Press story via the Bradenton Herald". Retrieved February 11, 2007. 
  8. ^ Florida Governor's Office (2011-04-18). "Ananth Prasad Named FDOT Secretary" (Press release). Florida Governor's Office. Retrieved 2011-10-29. 
  9. ^ Florida Department of Transportation - Public Information Office (2011). "Public Information Office - District 1". Florida Department of Transportation. Retrieved 2011-10-29. 
  10. ^ Florida Department of Transportation - Public Information Office (2011). "Public Information Office - District 2". Florida Department of Transportation. Retrieved 2011-10-29. 
  11. ^ Florida Department of Transportation - Public Information Office (2011). "Public Information Office - District 3". Florida Department of Transportation. Retrieved 2011-10-29. 
  12. ^ Florida Department of Transportation - Public Information Office (2011). "Public Information Office - District 4". Florida Department of Transportation. Retrieved 2011-10-29. 
  13. ^ Florida Department of Transportation - Public Information Office (2011). "Public Information Office - District 5". Florida Department of Transportation. Retrieved 2011-10-29. 
  14. ^ Florida Department of Transportation - Public Information Office (2011). "Public Information Office - District 6". Florida Department of Transportation. Retrieved 2011-10-29. 
  15. ^ Florida Department of Transportation - Public Information Office (2011). "Public Information Office - District 7". Florida Department of Transportation. Retrieved 2011-10-29. 
  16. ^ "Florida's Turnpike: The Less Stressway". Retrieved November 2, 2005. 

External links[edit]