Bad for Rural Communities

The “build more toll roads” mindset assumes that all of our communities should be and want to be like Tampa or Orlando. This robs Floridians of the choice to live in rural communities and small towns. Many residents and local governments in the proposed pathways of the Northern Turnpike Extension toll roads are concerned about the impact of toll roads on existing local small businesses and their rural way of life. They don’t want to see small downtowns that have supported businesses for generations replaced by mega gas-stations and fast food.

Many people have moved to rural areas of Florida–or never left–to take advantage of our unique lifestyle and natural beauty. These new toll roads jeopardize what makes these communities so special. Florida does not need more strip malls and toll roads but rather needs to invest in vibrant local communities that provide real lifestyle and service choices for its citizens.

To the people who live there, small towns are home and are worth more than the sum of their parts. If we pave over the quiet, slower-paced, and wild places in Florida, a unique rural lifestyle and way of life will be lost forever.