Interstate 75 South - Manatee County

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Interstate 75 South
Approaching back to back interchanges with Moccasin-Wallow Road (Exit 229) and Interstate 275 (Exit 228) on I-75 south.
Moccasin-Wallow Road (CR 683) connects U.S. 41 to the west with the community of Parrish and U.S. 301 to the east. Unmarked beyond guide signs on I-75, CR 683 east indirectly connects with SR 62 via U.S. 301 south. Photo taken 08/28/18.
Entering the diamond interchange (Exit 229) with CR 683 (Moccasin-Wallow Road) on I-75 south. CR 683 forms an L-shaped route, measuring 11.8 miles from U301 and 36th Avenue East in Ellenton to U.S. 301 at Parrish. The western 0.75 miles of Moccassin-Wallow Road to Gillette is unmarked CR 675. Photo taken 08/28/18.
Interstate 275 concludes the 60.64-mile loop through Tampa and St. Petersburg at a three-wye interchange (Exit 228) with I-75 in one mile. Photo taken 08/28/18.
Interstate 275 returns to I-75 via the tolled Sunshine Skyway Bridge from St. Petersburg and Pinellas County. Moving about nine million tons of cargo annually as the closest deep water seaport to the Panama Canal, Port Manatee represents an important transportation link for Florida's shipping industry. The facility lies three miles north of I-275 off U.S. 41 at Gillette Photo taken 08/28/18.
Downtown St. Petersburg lies 23 miles to the northwest via Interstate 275. The urban freeway winds through the city en route to Pinellas Park, Largo and the Howard Frankland Bridge across Old Tampa Bay. Photo taken 08/28/18.
A single lane ramp departs I-75 south for Interstate 275 north at Exit 228. The freeway initially leads west to Terra Ceia before turning north onto the Sunshine Skyway bridge across Tampa Bay.
Historically I-275 was the initial route of I-75 while the freeway east of Tampa Bay was designated Interstate 75E. I-75E was renumbered as I-75 by the mid 1970s. Photo taken 08/28/18.
A high speed flyover shuttles drivers from I-275 south onto I-75 north beyond this reassurance marker. This ramp closed in July 2018 for an $8 million, 10-month concrete bridge deck replacement project.1 Photo taken 08/28/18.
With the advent of traffic from Interstate 275 south, 2018 counts recorded by FDOT along I-75 south increased from 80,500 vehicles per day (vpd) to 100,500 vpd. 79,000 vpd was recorded on this stretch in 2014. Advancing southward toward Ellenton, the freeway next meets U.S. 301 at a folded diamond interchange (Exit 224). Photo taken 05/18/19.
U.S. 301 crosses paths with I-75 for the third and final time southwest from Parrish. Measuring just shy of 1,100 miles, U.S. 301 originates at Biddles Corner, Delaware and ends at U.S. 41 in Downtown Sarasota. Photo taken 05/18/19.
Interstate 75 south reaches Exit 224 for U.S. 301 (Exit 224). Exit 224 serves the adjacent Prime Outlets at Ellenton, which house a tourist information center. Photo taken 07/02/11.
The guide sign at Exit 224 was knocked down in Summer 2018 and finally replaced after January 2019. Estimated $138 million in construction will rebuild this exchange into a tight diamond interchange, with additional lanes along I-75 and provisions for tolled Express lanes. Photo taken 11/28/19.
Both Ellenton and Palmetto lie to the west of Exit 224. Ellenton is home to Gamble Plantation Historic State Park--a one time site of an extensive sugar plantation and the only surviving plantation house in south Florida. Palmetto is a city of around 12,000 along the north banks of the Manatee River. Photo taken 11/28/19.
U.S. 301 follows the course of the Manatee River west 3.5 miles to combine with U.S. 41 south across the DeSoto Bridge into Bradenton. A short stretch of former alignment parallels the six-lane arterial just to the south at I-75. Photo taken 11/28/19.
The Manatee River begins in the northeast corner of the Manatee County and flows approximately 36 miles westward to end at the Gulf of Mexico west of Bradenton. Photo taken 05/18/19.
Curving to the southeast from the Manatee River by Tom Bennett Park, Interstate 75 approaches Exit 220 with SR 64. Photo taken 05/18/19.
Heading east from I-75, SR 64 passes through northern reaches of the upscale Lakewood Ranch community before transitioning into a rural two lane highway en route to Bradenton Motorsports Park, Lake Manatee State Park, Myakka Head and Hardee County. Photo taken 08/28/18.
State Road 64 extends from Holmes Beach on Anna Maria Island east through Downtown Bradenton to Zolfo Springs, south of Wauchula, and Avon Park. Photo taken 05/18/19.
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Construction from June 2017 to Fall 2019 at Exit 220 removed the loop ramp from I-75 north to SR 64 west, upgraded bridges at the exchange and rebuilt the entrance and exit ramps. The $39.1 million project accommodates the planned ten-lane expansion of I-75 with Express toll lanes. Photos taken 05/18/19.
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SR 64 was widened from four to six lanes in 2012-2014 west between I-75 and the causeway across the Braden River. Photos taken 05/18/19.
Interstate 75 traverses a rural swath between SR 64 and Williams Creek. A 30-month project commenced in Fall 2018 to widen 6.75 miles of I-75 southward from SR 64 to a point north of University Parkway.2 Photo taken 04/05/14.
Exit 217 lies two miles ahead with SR 70 by Lakewood Ranch. University Parkway, straddling the Sarasota-Manatee county line across I-75, follows in six miles. Travelers continuing through Southwest Florida will reach Naples in 120 miles. Photo taken 05/18/19.
Turning nearly due south from Williams Creek, I-75 advances to within one mile of the parclo interchange (Exit 217) with SR 70. A trans-peninsular highway, SR 70 stretches from U.S. 41 at Oneco east across the state to U.S. 1 in Fort Pierce.
A north-south branch of SR 70 (15th Street) also connects with Bradenton as well. The 3.03-mile leg stems north from CR 683 (301 Boulevard) to Samoset and SR 64 (Manatee Avenue). Photo taken 08/28/18.
The $80.7 million project underway from October 2018 to Fall 2021 expands I-75 along the ensuing 6.75 mile stretch to eight lanes and reconfigures the exchange with SR 70. Photo taken 11/28/19.
SR 70 joins Interstate 75 with Lakewood Ranch nearby on the 41-mile drive to Arcadia, seat of DeSoto County. The state road constitutes of a six-lane urban arterial west along 53rd Avenue East to Oneco and U.S. 41 (14th Street West). U.S. 41 leads north to Bradenton and south to Sarasota. Photo taken 05/18/19.
The six lane freeway runs between The Preserve at Tara golf course community to the west and the Ranch Lake Boulevard frontage road to the east. 130,500 vehicles per day (vpd) were recorded by FDOT along this stretch of I-75 in 2018. Counts increase to 142,000 south of forthcoming University Boulevard. Photo taken 08/28/18.
Fort Myers reappears on I-75 southbound mileage signs at 81 miles out. Drivers bound for the Collier County seat of Naples have another 116 miles to go. Photo taken 08/28/18.
Interstate 75 spans the Braden River south of the Linger Lodge Road over crossing. Expansion plans for I-75 include widening the bridges here to accommodate eight overall lanes of traffic with auxiliary lanes added between University Parkway and SR 70. Future work will add two Express toll lanes per direction.2 Photo taken 06/17/14.
I-75 meets University Parkway (unsigned County Road 610) at Exit 213 in 1.25 miles. University Parkway connects the freeway with Lakewood Ranch to the east and with 2014-opened Mall at University Town Center and U.S. 41 (Tamiami Trail) in Sarasota to the west. Photo taken 07/07/17.
Both the New College of Florida and USF Sarasota-Manatee County campuses are located near the west end of University Parkway off Sarasota Bay. Photo taken 04/05/14.
22 months of construction completed on May 21, 2017 reconfigured the traditional diamond interchange into Florida's first diverging diamond interchange (DDI).3 University Parkway consists of a busy six lane commercial arterial west to U.S. 301, Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport (SRQ) and U.S. 41 (Tamiami Trail) in north Sarasota. A portion of the route, between Washington Boulevard and 15th Street East, doubled as U.S. 301 until the mid 1980s. Photo taken 07/07/17.
Two travel lanes leave for University Parkway (Exit 213). Commercial and residential growth along the University Parkway corridor, along with persistent traffic congestion, led to conversion of the existing interchange into a DDI. Photo taken 05/18/18.
The $74.5 million DDI conversion project3 also expanded the University Parkway off-ramp to three lanes west to nearby shopping complexes and two lanes connecting east to Lakewood Ranch. Though indicated on these overhead signs, no other visible evidence of CR 610 exists along the 6.93 mile long University Parkway. Photo taken 05/18/18.
Interstate 75 enters Sarasota County at the apex of University Parkway interchange. The freeway travels through the county for the next 42.62 miles. Palm trees were planted in the freeway median here in 2019. Photo taken 05/18/19.

  1. I-275 Southbound to I-75 Northbound Bridge Deck Replacement in Manatee County. Florida Department of Transportation, July 2018.
  2. Interstate 75 from North of University Parkway to South of SR 64, Manatee County. FDOT District 1, project web page.
  3. "New Diverging Diamond leaves some confused, but many think it’s a positive change." Bradenton Herald (FL), May 21, 2017.

Photo Credits:

07/02/11, 04/05/14, 06/17/14, 07/07/17, 05/18/18, 08/28/18, 05/18/19, 11/28/19 by AARoads

Connect with:
Interstate 275
U.S. 301
State Road 70

Page Updated 11-29-2019.