U.S. 19 is a major highway joining Florida's Suncoast with the Nature Coast and Big End region. Originating at a grade-separated interchange with U.S. 41 in Memphis, near Palmetto and Bradenton, U.S. 19 travels north from the Florida peninsula through Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and Pennsylvania, ending at U.S. 20 in Erie. Within the Sunshine State, U.S. 19 measures 264 miles, Initially crossing over Tampa Bay via the Sunshine Skyway into St. Petersburg, U.S. 19 heads north through urban Pinellas County to New Port Richey, Spring Hill and Crystal River. Further north and into the Big Bend region, U.S. 19 remains a sparsely populated corridor, passing through Chiefland and Perry en route to southern Georgia. The route enters the Peach state north of Monticello.
U.S. 19 Florida Guides
The St. Petersburg-Clearwater Expressway was proposed as a 20.2-mile freeway that would have originated in Downtown St. Petersburg and continue northwest to Clearwater. This roadway was considered as a potential Interstate Highway corridor in the 1970s. No number was assigned and the U.S. 19 freeway was not constructed with those funds because of ineligibility for federal Interstate highway funding at that time. It was officially dropped from plans in 1978.
Notwithstanding the 1970s plan for U.S. 19, a new plan took place in the early 2000s to bring U.S. 19 to freeway standards between Pinellas County Road 611 (49th Street N) in St. Petersburg and SR 580 (Main Street) in Dunedin, north of Clearwater, with all but two segments completed by 2009.
Construction of the Gateway Express (State Road 690) along Pinellas County Road 296 (Bryan Dairy Road) will link Interstate 275 and U.S. 19 together with a limited access toll road. Construction on the elevated lanes over CR 296 started in early 2018. Work runs through late 2022.
Page Updated 04-28-2020.