New section of Pope Road renamed White Eagle Boulevard at Lakewood Ranch

jajones1@bradenton.comJanuary 17, 2014 

LAKEWOOD RANCH -- In her 24 years as address coordinator for the Manatee County Public Safety Department, Vicky Warner said she had never seen it happen before.

Two sections of the same road did not line up.

In reviewing plans for completion of Lakewood Ranch's Pope Road, county staff found the original Pope Road off State Road 64 would not align with a newer section extending north from State Road 70.

The misalignment was discovered in reviewing plans for two new communities, Eagle Trace Phase III and Serenity Creek.

As a result, the new section of Pope Road, which will eventually align with Rye Road when completed by developer Schroeder-Manatee Ranch, has been renamed White Eagle Boulevard.

The old section of Pope Road, named after the family that homesteaded the area, will retain its original name.

"Our land development code does not allow two streets to have the same name," Warner said, citing potential public safety confusion and danger. "We can't have two Pope Roads, and this keeps the name intact for the Popes."

White Eagle Boulevard runs north and south between state roads 64 and 70 and is midway between two other north-south roads: Lakewood Ranch Boulevard and Lorraine Road. It is also in the heart of some of the most intense development underway at Lakewood Ranch, including Bridgewater, Esplanade and Central Park.

Suzanne Fugate, vice president of LWR Development, said White Eagle Boulevard will eventually be a four-lane road.

The name White Eagle was selected because it is nature-oriented, reflecting Lakewood Ranch's emphasis on the environment, Fugate said.

White Eagle is in the newest Lakewood Ranch developments, and nobody had to change their address or print new business cards or stationary, Fugate and Warner said.

The last notable name change at Lakewood Ranch was when Center Ice Parkway became Rangeland Parkway after the developer of a minor league hockey team and multi-purpose entertainment center for the area went belly up.

Road signs for White Eagle Boulevard were recently installed.

James A. Jones Jr., East Manatee reporter, can be contacted at 941-745-7053 or on Twitter @jajones1

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