Foreign company may build Florida toll road

| 2/27/2007

A foreign company has been named as the number one contender in a bid to build a toll road near Tampa, FL.

The Plenary Group - a consortium of companies from Australia, Canada and New Zealand - has been named as the possible builder of a three-mile toll road that would connect Interstate 275 to "New Tampa," which is an area in northern Tampa that some people believe should be incorporated into a separate city.

Marty Stone, planning director for the Tampa-Hillsborough Expressway Authority, told Land Line Magazine the $150 million project is the first public-private partnership of its kind in Florida. Stone said it was a "true" public-private partnership, meaning built from scratch with private dollars. The city of Tampa has acquired the right of way.

The St. Petersburg Times reported that drivers could pay as much as $2.75 each way for a three-mile trip on the road.

Stone stressed that the deal is still a long way from being complete. He also added that the road, while open to trucks, would not be a major truck route and has very few truck origins and destinations.

According to, the concession could last 40-60 years.

- By Terry Scruton and David Tanner, staff writers