FDOT holds public kickoff meeting for Turnpike Extension Project

Published: Dec. 7, 2021 at 11:28 PM EST
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Florida Department of Transportation officials met with Levy County residents in Chiefland tonight to discuss the Northern Turnpike Extension Project.

FDOT set up different presentations to answer questions and ease concerns Levy County residents had.

Residents say they found out about the project through TV20′s report last week as well as Facebook groups.

Maps of the turnpike’s potential routes are concerning to many residents. Two of those routes are drawn through parts of the county.

Residents are concerned this will not only affect their way of life, but their livelihood as well.

Mandy Vey, who owns a horse rescue farm in Chiefland, says the roadway would “completely wipe out my income. I work from home. I board horses as well and do training in the interim. It displaces children, elderly, everybody. It ruins everything essentially.”

Commissioner Matt Brooks says he doesn’t want the natural resources of Levy County to be damaged, noting “The Goethe State Forest is something we want to protect. The state wants to protect it. It’s a state forest. We’ve got Waccasassa, we’ve got you know our springs so we’ve got a lot of natural resources that this could potentially cause great harm to.”

He also says if the project happens, he wants the commission “to be at the table. We want it to be done right and we want to make sure that people have the ability to be compensated for any losses that there may be to their lands or to their homes and livelihoods.”

FDOT and Levy County residents will be talking about this project again at this month’s county commission meeting on December 21.

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