Palm Bay 'Carmageddon' To Start March 24

UPDATE:  Palm Bay 'Carmageddon' Delayed

PALM BAY, Fla. – Motorists who routinely use a heavily traveled stretch of Palm Bay Road, between Minton Road east toward Interstate 95, have just one week left to plan alternate routes before work gets underway to replace a collapsed stormwater drain that will close Palm Bay Road for an estimated 11 weeks.

Effective at 10 p.m. Monday, March 24, Palm Bay Road will be closed from its intersection at Minton Road east to Norfolk Parkway. Signs have been posted since March 10 to advise motorists of the pending project. 

While encouraging motorists to be patient during the construction period, officials are strongly encouraging motorists to plan alternate routes to not only avoid the construction zone, but to also avoid expected gridlock stemming from the detours that begin next week. Norfolk Parkway is the designated detour. North and south traffic on Minton Road will remain open, but turns onto Palm Bay Road will be blocked.

Here is the timetable for the project:

March 24: 10 p.m. – Close Palm Bay Road at Minton Road.
March 25: Construction crews, equipment and materials begin mobilizing to the site and setting up.
March 25-April 8: Excavation of failed pipe, establish water control, build new headwall foundation.
March 30: Drainage capacity for severe storm events is restored.
April 8: Culvert structures delivered; installation begins that same day.
April 8-June 11: Permanent drainage structures and road paving installations are completed.
June 11: Palm Bay Road is reopened to traffic. Some paving striping will be required 30 days after asphalt placement is completed.

The projected time of road closure for Palm Bay Road is 79 days. Work will be performed 12 hours per day; 6 days per week. Scheduling depends on weather and material deliveries.

The stormwater drain, which is a steel drain pipe that runs north-south beneath Palm Bay Road at its intersection with Minton Road, has helped drainage in the area for 30-plus years. The collapsed pipe was first discovered Feb. 20. Emergency repairs were made to keep the road open, but a planned permanent fix is targeted for completion before the rainy season and before the peak of the hurricane season.

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