BRANDON — This year saw the final phase of the Segment Six project being wrapped up.
The estimated $28 million project saw Route 7 through town torn up and rebuilt, removing certain curves, upgrading sidewalks, creating parking, and replacing underground infrastructure such as water lines. The project, in the planning stages for decades, broke ground last year with construction focusing on the north end of town.
This year, things went smoother.
The project is being funded 90% by the federal government, with the state picking up 15% and the town the rest. Voters approved a bond a few years ago to cover the town’s share.
While the road was being worked on, Brandon, through its Downtown Brandon Alliance, and Brandon Area Chamber of Commerce, worked to promote local businesses with rewards cards and prize drawings.
Bernie Carr, spokesman for the Segment Six project, told the Herald in November that despite the headaches caused to commuters by the construction, Brandon’s economy actually added several businesses and saw some others expand. He said the goal of the project was to make the downtown more attractive and walkable, and he felt the activity was a sign business owners have high hopes for how things will look come spring.
— Keith Whitcomb, Jr.