Whenever U.S. Highway 98 or County Road 30A are discussed, one of the first things mentioned is the traffic.
To help Walton County residents and visitors eventually travel the coastal roads more quickly, the Florida Department of Transportation is crafting a Project Development and Environmental Study, according to Walton County spokesman Louis Svehla.
Svehla said the study aims to find locations where connector roads could be built. FDOT also plans to study the environmental, economic and social impacts of new roads, according to its website.
To protect South Walton's unique ecosystems, the PD&E study plans to evaluate potential impacts on surrounding wetlands, protected species and state forests.
If no feasible traffic improvements are found, a "no-building alternative" will be issued, and current roadways could remain the same, FDOT said.
The section being studied is a roughly triangular area between Highway 98 and 30A, starting at Highway 395 in Seagrove and tapering east to where 98 and 30A intersect near the county line, according to Svehla.
He said the project had its first meeting Nov. 19 and is expected to be completed by December 2019.
Walton County Commissioners approved spending nearly $600,000 for the project.
Svehla said traffic will not be affected by the study.
Svehla stressed that county commissioners weren't set on adding roads, but simply looking into all options to alleviate traffic.