Home Content CategoryPedestrian/Bike Advocacy Planned A1A Upgrade in Boca Raton Needs an Upgrade
What FDOT Should Do on A1A But Isn't

Planned A1A Upgrade in Boca Raton Needs an Upgrade

by Jim Wood


The Florida Department of Transportation’s (FDOT) planned A1A upgrade in Boca Raton does not satisfy Boca Raton’s Complete Streets and Vision Zero program principals. FDOT, Palm Beach County and Boca Raton have all committed to Complete Streets and Vision Zero. For more information about these, see our previous articles “Boca Raton’s Complete Streets Policy” and “UPDATE: Boca Raton’s Vision Zero Action Plan RFP“.

FDOT’s proposed A1A upgrade construction spans the entire 4.883-mile length of A1A in Boca Raton. The planned start is in the Fall of 2027. Planned completion is the Fall of 2028. Future upgrades to the road will probably not occur for another 20 years, so it is extremely important to get the design right. Now is the time to start implementing Complete Streets and Vision Zero on this important Boca Raton asset.


FDOT provided information on the A1A upgrade project at a meeting with residents on November 15, 2023 provided here:

FDOT November 2023 Presentation

Additionally, they met with the Boca Raton Citizen Pedestrian and Bikeway Advisory Board on March 13, 2024, to review the upgrade designs. At the review, the Bike Board and Boca Raton residents suggested a number of changes that would make it safer and better. But FDOT was not receptive to changes. The FDOT proposed improvements don’t meet the requirements of Complete Streets and Vision Zero.

The following figure from the FDOT presentation describes the proposed improvements.

The FDOT Proposal vs Modern Standards

The principal items of Complete Streets and Vision Zero are below. The A1A upgrade program in Boca Raton should be evaluated using these requirements. Non-compliant items should be fixed in the plan and brought into compliance.

Complete Streets (see Complete Streets at atpolicy.org)

  • Pedestrians Quality pedestrian facilities include adequate unobstructed walking space, adequate lighting, benches, trees, shading, roadway separation and on-street parking, easy access to walkable destinations, and safe and frequent crossings.
  • Bicyclists Quality bicycle facilities include spaces comfortably shared with traffic, clearly marked bike lanes (or appropriate separation based on speed and volume of vehicle traffic), adequate bicycle parking, intersection treatments, and destinations accessible by bike.
  • Transit Quality transit facilities include connectivity to the bicycle and pedestrian network, functional shelters, separated/ prioritized travel ways, coordinated land use planning, bike parking, lighting, and walkable and bikeable distances between stops and stations.
  • Place Complete Streets are places. They do not simply link destinations; they are destinations in themselves, including places for sidewalk dining, social gathering, exercising, and relaxing. Designing Complete Streets requires an understanding of network priority and context, to move from vision to plans to implementation.
  • Value Complete Streets can enhance property value. Streets design can support commerce though such tools as sidewalk dining, street sales, and bike parking.

Vision Zero (see Vision Zero – Palm Beach TPA)

  • Traffic-related fatalities and serious injuries are preventable and unacceptable
  • Human life takes priority over mobility
  • Human error is inevitable, so the transportation system should allow for it to happen without death or serious injury
  • A system-level approach to safety should be adopted to effect change
  • Safe human behaviors, education, and enforcement are essential contributors to a safe system
  • High speed is a primary cause of traffic death and serious injury; it should be managed with sensitivity to vulnerable road users.


This article provides information on the planned A1A upgrade in Boca Raton. Resident reviews of the plans indicate that the plans fall short of expectations for this valuable city asset. The FDOT proposal falls short of Complete Streets and Vision Zero standards.

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