Bay Parkway, also known as Loop Road, set to extend

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PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - An extension to Bay Parkway, formerly known as Loop Road, in Panama City Beach is expected to ease traffic on Back Beach Road.

Bay County commissioners are partnering with the city of Panama City Beach and the Florida Department of Transportation to pay for the $9 million project.

The new roadway will span from Nautilus Street to Bay Parkway, right behind DICK'S Sporting Goods on Back Beach Road.

Commissioners say it's all to reduce congestion and keep up with the population growth in the area.

"I think folks who live on the beach who travel east and west on Back Beach Road have noticed the increase in traffic over the last few years and this is just a way to try to alleviate that burden," Bay County Commissioner Philip "Griff" Griffitts said.

Construction is set to begin next year.