Highway 388 will become an important road when the new airport opens, providing a major east-west collector road in Bay County and a connector to Highway 77 and Highway 79, but the county wants the state to take over the responsibility of repairing the 12-mile highway.
The current "two lanes" are in bad shape. The county would have to come up with about $6 million to resurface and expand the road. That's why the county is urging DOT to take ownership from the county.
Transportation officials say they'll do it if the county takes over a stretch of Front Beach Road from the western boundary of Panama City Beach Parkway, and a half-mile stretch of Lisenby Avenue from 23rd Street to Highway 390, but that's not what commissioners want.
"Best thing to do is to say dot take the road. I wasn't opposed to a tradeoff but I’d rather see us without a tradeoff."
Commissioners instructed staff members to approach DOT about taking 388 without the trade. If the state balks, then commissioners will reconsider the original deal.