Crestview bypass moving along

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CRESTVIEW, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Driving through the Crestview area can mean a lot of waiting; so county officials are working to ease tensions on the road.

Recently, Okaloosa County Commissioners approved the latest alignment for the new bypass in the area. They expect the project to be done within the next five years. (WJHG/WECP)

"Crestview bypass is by far known to be the most necessary transportation project in Okaloosa County. It should diminish some of the congestion on [Highway] 85 and it's a big project," said Okaloosa County Commissioner Kelly Windes.

The project stretches east of Antioch Road, over I-10, and south to meet Garrett Pit Road, and then heads north cutting through a wooded area.

Once the bypass is complete, people will be driving on a road behind the Addison Place apartment complex.

"It's a big deal and what it amounts to, basically, is a project that would ordinarily take 20-25 years. We hope to do in five years," said Windes.

While county officials say it will be done in record time, they're not cutting any corners.

"So here Okaloosa County we want to make sure that we're especially cognizant of everything from endangered species habitats to wetlands, to people's personal property," said Okaloosa Public Information Officer Chris Saul.

Recently, commissioners say they approved the road's path so it provides the most environmental protection possible.

"And we get people to their houses quicker," said Saul.

Also, P.J. Adams Parkway is being widened from two to four lanes.

County officials say everything needed for the project must be in place by the last day of next year for the roadway to be completed within the five-year time frame.

"We're getting there, we got a lot of hoops to jump through but team Okaloosa is getting there," said Windes.

The project is expected to cost around $200 million.

The money is mostly coming from the Florida Department of Transportation and Triumph Gulf Coast.

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