CSX Rail Repairs to Close West Pipkin Road Early Tomorrow Morning for Several Days
Bartow, Fla. (January 22, 2019) — CSX Transportation has scheduled follow-up repairs to emergency work performed last month at its West Pipkin Road rail crossing between the Harden Boulevard and Old Highway 37 intersections in south Lakeland. West Pipkin Road is expected to close early tomorrow morning to through-traffic in both directions at the crossing for three to five days. Congestion and potentially lengthy delays are expected as traffic is rerouted to bypass the work zone. Eastbound traffic on approach to the rail crossing will detour at Old Highway 37. Dependent on destination, westbound traffic will detour at State Road 37 (South Florida Avenue) or Harden Boulevard.
CSX initially informed county officials several weeks ago that the West Pipkin Road closure would take place next Monday. However, CSX fast-tracked the start date without county input or prior notice. The Board of County Commissioners and the County Manager’s Office regret the late-notice by CSX to close the West Pipkin Road rail crossing. Polk County is keenly aware of the disruption to daily commuters, the neighboring community and other motorists caused by the closure of one of our heavily-traveled roadways. However, due to longstanding CSX statutory entitlements, there are no options for the County to delay this work. CSX has precedence and considerable authority to close roadway crossings along their railway lines.
Anyone wanting to report a public road crossing maintenance issue or complaint should call CSX Transportation at 800-332-4697. The automated phone menu directs callers to press #3 for road closure information.
Polk County asks drivers to remain patient, be cautious and to add time to their trips through this area. Despite the likely aggravation, Polk County recognizes these repairs are necessary and will make for better and safer driving conditions when completed.