Osceola Parkway

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Osceola County 522.svgOsceola Parkway logo.png

County Road 522
Osceola Parkway
Route information
Length: 14.6 mi[1] (23.5 km)
Existed: June 16, 1987 (1987-06-16) (original road)
August 18, 1995 (toll road) – present
Major junctions
West end: I‑4 at Disney World
  Turnpike near Kissimmee
East end: Boggy Creek Road near Buenaventura Lakes
Location
Counties: Osceola
Highway system

County roads in Florida

SR 520 SR 524

The Osceola Parkway, signed as County Road 522 (CR 522) since around 2003 (and originally planned as State Road 424[citation needed]), is a 12.4-mile-long (20.0 km), partially tolled arterial road extending east–west across the northern boundary of Osceola County, Florida, roughly paralleling the border with Orange County. It connects the Walt Disney World with Interstate 4 and Florida's Turnpike before terminating at Boggy Creek Road near Buenaventura Lakes, and is maintained by Osceola County. Only the section between the Southern Connector and a toll plaza east of Shingle Creek is tolled; the rest includes mainly at-grade intersections. A portion of the Osceola Parkway was once called Dart Boulevard.

Route description[edit]

The road starts at an intersection with an entrance road to the Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge in Lake Buena Vista. For its westernmost 1.2 miles (1.9 km), it has many characteristics of an at-grade boulevard; however, east of Buena Vista Drive, it becomes a grade-separated expressway. Heading east, the parkway passes through several sections of the Disney World Complex before intersecting with World Drive and crossing into Osceola County. The parkway exits Walt Disney World, just before an interchange with Interstate 4. Although Osceola Parkway was built across Interstate 4 into Walt Disney World, an interchange with that freeway (Exit 65) did not open until 2001. The ramps with the exit to nearby SR 536 are interspersed such that traffic going on to I-4 from SR 536 cannot directly exit onto Osceola Parkway, and vice versa. The road then has an interchange with the Southern Connector, where the Parkway becomes a limited access toll road (although not a full expressway). The parkway passes through residential areas, passing through an interchange with Poinciana Blvd., featuring ramp tolls of $0.75 for eastbound exiting traffic and westbound entering traffic. East of the interchange, Osceola Parkway crosses the one mainline toll plaza just east of Shingle Creek, with a $1.75 toll as of April 2009.[2]

Ice cream shop on Osceola Parkway

East of the toll plaza, the tolled section of the parkway ends as it becomes a surface street, as it continues to pass through residential and shopping areas with at grade intersections, most notably with John Young Parkway and U.S. Route 441 (Orange Blossom Trail) as the road heads towards Florida's Turnpike. East of the Turnpike, the road continues as a four lane street through another residential development until its terminus at Boggy Creek Road, near Buenaventura Lakes.

The Parkway originally used an electronic toll collection system known as O-PASS, however the county elected to discontinue its own toll collection program and instead contracted with the Orlando–Orange County Expressway Authority (OOCEA) to provide that service, so the O-PASS system was merged with the E-PASS system. The Osceola Parkway also accepts SunPass accounts which are run by the Florida Department of Transportation and are accepted on most toll roads throughout the State of Florida.

History[edit]

Original logo featuring Osceola, used until c. 2003

The road originally opened as Dart Boulevard on June 16, 1987 as a two mile stretch between U.S. Highway 441 and Buenaventura Boulevard.[3] During the early 1990s, Disney World and Orlando area officials extended and upgraded the road to its current 12.4 miles (20.0 km) parkway form, widened the lanes from two to four and added an interchange with Florida's Turnpike, with the highway opening on August 18, 1995.[4][5][6]

A $19.2 million project has begun to widen 2.66 miles of Osceola Parkway from two to four lanes between the intersections of Buenaventura Boulevard and Boggy Creek Road from Myers Road to 600 feet north of Osceola Parkway. The date of substantial completion for the second phase of work on the east-west road is April 1, 2015. [7] [8]

Future[edit]

The Osceola County Expressway Authority is planning an easterly extension as part of the Osceola County Beltway System. Following a 2012 feasibility study and a March 2013 public meeting, the project team decided on an alignment along the county line, either leaving the current roadway east of Windy Cove Drive (Bridgewater subdivision) or following the current roadway to its end at Boggy Creek Road and curving northeast there. A spur would extend north to SR 417 near Orlando International Airport.[9]

Major intersections[edit]

County Location Mile[1] km Destinations Notes
Orange Bay Lake 0.000 0.000 Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge guard shack
0.2 0.3 To US 192 / Sherberth Road
0.4 0.6 Disney's Animal Kingdom interchange
1.4 2.3 To SR 429 / Turnpike north – Disney's All-Star Resort, Blizzard Beach Water Park, Coronado Springs (Buena Vista Drive) interchange
2.2 3.5 To I‑4 / US 192 – Disney's Hollywood Studios, Epcot, Magic Kingdom, Downtown Disney (World Drive) interchange
3.0 4.8 Victory Way - Disney's Hollywood Studios, Downtown Disney, Disney's Pop Century Resort, Disney's Art of Animation Resort, ESPN Wide World of Sports, Bonnet Creek Resort
Osceola   4.1 6.6 I‑4 (SR 400) – Orlando, Tampa Exit 65 on I-4; west end of CR 522
  4.8 7.7 International Drive South - US 192 Resort Area, Celebration
  5.2 8.4 SR 417 to I‑4 west – International Airport Exit 3 on SR 417
  5.9 9.5 Seralago Boulevard - US 192 Resort Area, Old Town West end of toll road
  7.2 11.6 To SR 535 / US 192 / Poinciana Boulevard – US 192 Resort Area, Medieval Times, Green Meadows Farm, Horse World Stables eastbound exit and westbound entrance
  7.4 11.9 SR 535 – US 192 Resort Area, Poinciana, Horse World Stables, Green Meadows Farm, Southport Park / Airboat Rides westbound exit and eastbound entrance
Kissimmee 10.0 16.1 toll plaza
10.4 16.7 Flora Boulevard East end of toll road
  11.4 18.3
US 17 Truck south / US 92 Truck west (John Young Parkway) – Osceola Heritage Park
interchange; west end of US 17 Truck / US 92 Truck overlap
  12.4 20.0 US 17 / US 92 / US 441 (Orange Blossom Trail / SR 500 / SR 600) – Orlando, Kissimmee, Gatorland, Airport east end of US 17 Truck / US 92 Truck overlap
  12.8 20.6 Old Dixie Highway (CR 527 south) west end of CR 527 overlap
  13.1 21.1 Orange Avenue (CR 527 north) east end of CR 527 overlap
Kissimmee 13.5 21.7 Michigan Avenue (CR 531 south) - Osceola Heritage Park
  13.9 22.4 Turnpike (SR 91) Exit 249 on Turnpike
Buenaventura Lakes 15.1 24.3 Buenaventura Boulevard
  17.5 28.2 Boggy Creek Road (CR 530 west) east end of Osceola Parkway; west end of CR 530 overlap
Osceola / Orange   18.7 30.1 To CR 15 / Boggy Creek Road (CR 527A north / CR 530 east) – Airport east end of CR 530 overlap
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Google Maps distance
  2. ^ "25-cent toll hike on Osceola Parkway". Orlando Business Journal. March 27, 2009. Retrieved January 6, 2013. 
  3. ^ Flowers, Shanna (June 12, 1987). "New Road May Spur Growth Dart Boulevard Interchange on Florida's Turnpike Could Lure Industry". Orlando Sentinel. [page needed]
  4. ^ Lebowitz, Lawrence J. (October 2, 1990). "Disney Helps Map Osceola Road Deal". Orlando Sentinel. p. A1. 
  5. ^ Owens, Darryl E. (July 18, 1993). "Caution: Construction Ahead on the Turnpike Workers Will Add an Interchange on Florida's Turnpike to Relieve Congestion on Osceola Parkway". Orlando Sentinel. p. K3. 
  6. ^ "Parkway Pointers". Orlando Sentinel. July 22, 1995. p. 1. 
  7. ^ Barth, Cindy (24 May 2013). "Osceola Parkway widening to start this summer". Orlando Business Journal. Retrieved 7 December 2013. 
  8. ^ Osceola County Florida http://www.osceola.org/public_works/226-3915-3921/osceola_parkway.cfm |url= missing title (help). 
  9. ^ Kimley-Horn and Associates, Osceola Parkway Extension and Boggy Creek Road/SR 417 Access Road PD&E Study (presentation), uploaded April 28, 2014

External links[edit]