By SARA KENNEDYskennedy@bradenton.com
MANATEE -- The state will build two right-hand turn lanes on Ninth Avenue West in downtown Bradenton, which officials hope will help relieve traffic congestion on the Green Bridge linking Bradenton and Palmetto.
The dedicated turn lanes will be located at the Third Avenue West and Manatee Avenue West intersections, said Claude Tankersley, Bradenton's director of public works and utilities.
Under current plans, dedicated right-hand turn lanes will be located at the Third Avenue and at the Manatee Avenue intersections on the south side of the bridge, Tankersley said.
Officials hope the news lanes will relieve a major traffic headache in downtown Motorists driving from Palmetto to Bradenton frequently get stuck atop the bridge as traffic builds up on the Bradenton side of the bridge.
Planners also will design a widening of the bicycle/pedestrian path on the west side of the bridge.
The state will do the two projects together, which should make them more cost-efficient and less disruptive for motorists, officials said Monday during a meeting of the Metropolitan Planning Organization.