“We are wondering about the very tall support tower going at Lake Ivanhoe. It appears to be extraordinarily tall considering the location. It doesn’t show on the graphics on the I4ultimate.com site.” – Jeff Abdon, CBA Architects
Mr. Abdon sent us the above question, accompanied with the following image, showing where the tower in question was being installed.
According to our friends at the Florida Department of Transportation, that pillar is actually called a “concrete pylon” and is the first of several to be built along the I-4 Ultimate corridor. They are meant to show motorists where they can directly connect to the tolled express lanes being added to the middle of the I-4 Ultimate corridor.
FDOT Communications Manager, Steve Olson, sent us the following:
“The pylons serve both practical and decorative functions on the corridor being rebuilt and expanded in a public-private partnership managed by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT).
On the practical side, the towering posts mark points where motorists can directly connect to Express Lanes from other roadways without entering the general use interstate lanes first. On the decorative side, the 90-foot-tall structures will be shaped in a distinctive way and lighted at night helping create a signature corridor.
The first pylon was built early in the project per construction plans. Two other tall pylons will be erected later by Grand National Drive in south Orlando, and two more will go up at Central Parkway in Altamonte Springs. Other smaller decorative pylons will be placed throughout the corridor, adding to the projects aesthetics.
When completed in 2021, the I-4 Ultimate Project will continue to have six non-tolled general use lanes (three in each direction) plus additional auxiliary lanes. The four dynamically tolled, Express Lanes (two in each direction) will be priced to maintain 50 MPH, according to traffic conditions.”