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Interstate 4 Westbound - Polk County

Interstate 4 West
Meeting Interstate 4 in northeastern Polk County is U.S. 27. U.S. 27, a busy north-south arterial, links Haines City with Clermont and the sprawling Four Corners area, where Lake, Orange, Osceola, and Polk Counties come together. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Drawing to within one quarter mile of the Exit 55 folded-cloverleaf interchange with U.S. 27. U.S. 27 serves suburban development throughout the corridor from Four Corners south to Haines City. The defunct Baseball City lies nearby. Photo taken 01/01/06.
U.S. 27 travels nearly the length of the state, beginning in Miami and heading northward through the hilly central peninsula to the state capital at Tallahassee. Clermont, a Lake County town, resides at the U.S. 27 junction with Florida 50 22 miles to the north. Photo taken 01/01/06.
A two-lane off-ramp departs interstate 4 west for U.S. 27. U.S. 27 continues south from Exit 55 nine miles to junction U.S. 17 & 92 at Haines City. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Widening of Interstate 4 through Polk resulted in a massive expansion of the original Exit 55 interchange. Tight ramps were realigned to sweep gradually toward U.S. 27 in the process. A drive northward along U.S. 27 to junction U.S. 192 entails one unending suburban landscape with new developments filling the gaps. Nearby Baseball City is now the site for the Posner Park development. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Interstate 4 leaves the growing U.S. 27 corridor for a 5.5-mile undeveloped stretch to junction Polk County 557. Photo taken 01/01/06.
FLDOT installed signs at various intervals along the Interstate highway network and Florida's Turnpike listing the mileage to major Interstate junctions and their nearby cities or destinations. One such sign along westbound in Polk lists the distances to Interstates 75 and 275. Photo taken 05/27/05

Polk County 557 leads north 6.25 miles from U.S. 17 & 92 (Lake Shore Drive) in Lake Alfred to Interstate 4 at Exit 48. U.S. 17 & 92 split one mile south of Polk County 557 on respective paths to Winter Haven and Auburndale. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Like Exit 55, Exit 48 also represents a folded-cloverleaf interchange. Polk County 557 travels a rather rural routing from Interstate 4 south into Lake Alfred. Northward the county road ends 5.5 miles at Deen Still Road amid orange groves and wetlands. Photo taken 05/27/05
A look at Exit 48 during the Polk County six-laning of Interstate 4. Polk County 557 meets Polk County 17 (Old Polk City Road) in 1.25 miles and Polk County 557A in 2.3 miles. These rural east-west roads link Polk 557 with Haines City to the east and Polk City to the west. Photo taken 05/27/05
Continuing west along Interstate 4 in rural Polk County toward the Auburndale and Polk City vicinity by Exit 44. Photos taken 01/01/06.
A set of rest areas situate along Interstate 4 between Exits 48 and 44. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Florida 559 ties into Interstate 4 at the Exit 44 diamond interchange adjacent to Little Lake Agnes. Florida 559 travels 10 miles overall between Auburndale to the south and Polk City to the northwest. Photo taken 05/27/05
One half mile east of the Exit 44 off-ramp to Florida 559. Florida 559 follows Broadway Boulevard northwest from Polk County 557A to its end at Florida 33 (Commonwealth Avenue) in Polk City. Polk City is home to the Fantasy of Flight museum, which houses the world's largest privately owned aircraft collection. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Drivers bound for Florida 559 leave Interstate 4 via Exit 44. Florida 559 follows Polk City Road south between Lakes Juliana and Mattie. Polk County 559A (Auburndale Cutoff Road) links Florida 559 with nearby Polk County 655 (Berkley Road), a north-south road through western Auburndale. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Next along Interstate 4 west is the trumpet interchange with Florida 570 Toll (Polk Parkway), a toll highway encircling the city of Lakeland south of Interstate 4. Florida 570 exists as a Super 2 freeway between Interstate 4 and Polk County 546 (Exit 18) and a four-lane freeway from there back to Interstate 4. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Westbound reassurance marker posted ahead of the Polk County 655 (Berkley Road) underpass. Photo taken 01/01/06.
This mileage sign predates the completion of Polk Parkway in design as it lists the next interchange (junction Florida 33) beyond Florida 570 Toll (Exit 41). Downtown Lakeland is 13 miles to the south via Florida 33 at Exit 33. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Florida 570 Toll provides a high-speed route to Auburndale via Exit 18 (Dixie Highway east) and Exit 17 (U.S. 92 east). Polk Parkway turns west at junction Florida 540 (Exit 15) and straddles southern Lakeland between Eaton Park and Medulla. Interstate 4 meets the west end of the toll road at Exit 27. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Interstate 4 west near the Mount Olive Road overpass, one half mile out from the Exit 41 loop ramp onto Florida 570 Toll west. Tolls rates range between 25 cents and $3.00 along Polk Parkway. Construction began on the 25-mile long toll road on January 25, 1996. Completion occurred on December 12, 1999 at a total cost of $490 million.1 Photo taken 01/01/06.
There is no shoulder at the Florida 570 Toll overpass, instead the right-hand lane occupies that space ahead of the Exit 41 off-ramp onto Polk Parkway south. Polk Parkway provides a route to Lakeland via U.S. 92 west in eight miles and Bartow via U.S. 98 (Bartow Road) south in 15 miles. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Florida 33 ventures west from Polk City and crosses paths with Interstate 4 at Exit 38. The state highway parallels the Interstate 4 corridor westward to Exit 33. USA International Speedway resides just east of Exit 33 along Florida 33. Photo taken 01/01/06.
A diamond interchange facilitates movements between Florida 33 and Interstate 4. Florida 33 loops south through northeast Lakeland to junction Florida 659 (Combee Road) back to Interstate 4 at Exit 33. Florida 659 leads south to U.S. 92 (Memorial Boulevard) east of Lake Parker. Photo taken 05/27/05.
Westbound at the Exit 38 ramp departure to Florida 33. Florida 33 tallies 41 miles between Groveland and downtown Lakeland. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Interstate 4 bends southwest through north Lakeland from Polk City to Winston. Six-laning of Interstate 4 through the city was completed in 2006. Photos taken 01/01/06 & 05/27/05.
Another in the series of Interstate junction signs posted along Interstate 4 westbound in Polk County. Interstate 4 ends at Interstate 275, 36 miles west of this sign. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Polk County 582 (Socrum Loop Road) interchanges with Interstate 4 adjacent to its touch of Florida 33. The county road heads south from the Gibsonia vicinity to Florida 33 at Exit 33. Florida 33 travels along the eastbound side of Interstate 4, merging with Polk County 582 briefly between Socrum Lop Road and Florida Avenue. Photo taken 05/27/05.
Old Combee Road passes over Interstate 4 ahead of the Exit 33 folded-diamond interchange with Florida 33 and Polk County 582. South of the freeway, Florida 33 follows Lakeland Hills Boulevard to Massachusetts Avenue and downtown Lakeland. Polk County 582 parallels close by along Florida Avenue, ending at U.S. 98 (Providence Road) one mile north of the central business district. Photo taken 05/27/05.
Interstate 4 meets Florida 33 and Polk County 582 near Lake Gibson. Socrum Loop Road travels east of the water body to Old Combee Road and north to Gibsonia and Providence. Florida 33 north serves residential areas north of Lake Parker. Interests to Joker Marchant Stadium, home of the Minor League Lakeland Tigers, should follow Florida 33 south one mile beyond the split with Polk County 582. Photo taken 05/27/05.
U.S. 98 meets Interstate 4 directly at the Exit 32 diamond interchange. The federal highway is the longest continuous route in the state of Florida, beginning at Palm Beach in South Florida and leaving at the Alabama state line west of Pensacola. Locally the road follows Providence Road between Providence and central Lakeland. Photo taken 05/27/05.
Looking at Interstate 4 near the Carpenters Way over crossing, one mile east of Exit 32 during the early phase of widening through Lakeland. The one-mile sign was replaced with the 1.50-mile panel pictured above. Photo taken 12/29/03.
U.S. 98 links Lakeland with Pasco County's Dade City 25 miles to the northwest. Southward U.S. 98 follows Providence Road to Florida Avenue through downtown Lakeland. Bartow Road carries the highway southeast to the Polk County seat of Bartow. Photo taken 05/27/05.
Polk County widening of Interstate 4 expanded the Exit 32 diamond interchange outwards. A two-lane off-ramp replaces the original ramp for U.S. 98 in the process. Lakeland Square Mall resides nearby on the busy commercial arterial. U.S. 98 also serves Florida Southern College, a campus designed by architect Frank Lloyd Wright, and the Carpenters Home Auditorium, a 10,000 seat religious-based venue. Photos taken 01/01/06 & 12/29/03.
Florida 539 (Kathleen Road) stems northwest from central Lakeland to intersect Interstate 4 at Exit 31. Polk County 35A continues Kathleen Road northwest to Griffin, Galloway, and Kathleen. Photo taken 12/29/03.
Westbound at the Exit 31 diamond interchange with Kathleen Road, Florida 539 south and Polk County 35A north. Florida 539 transitions into Florida 563 (Sikes Boulevard), a short expressway near downtown that features ramps to Main, Lemon, and Orange Streets near the Lakeland Center, the cities sports and entertainment arena, and Munn Park Historic District, an area featuring structures from the late 1800s and early 1900s. Photo taken 01/01/06.
A pre-Exits 28 and 27 mileage sign lists the next junction as County Line Road (Exit 25). Ramps to Exit 28 were completed in 2006 and the Polk Parkway interchange opened on August 9, 1998.1. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Concealed Exit 28 sign for U.S. 92 (West Memorial Boulevard) posted at the Swindell Road overpass. Exit 28 previously consisted of a partial "Y" interchange for Interstate 4 east onto West Memorial Boulevard (Florida 546) east. Redesign of the interchange occurred with the Polk County widening project to replace the partial exit with a full diamond interchange. What is ironic about the westbound signing is that "Old 18" tabs refer to something that never existed. Exit 18, the original sequential based number for Interstate 4 eastbound, never applied to westbound as there was no off-ramp here. Furthermore all Old exit tabs were to be removed by the end of 2005, yet a new old Exit 18 tab was added in 2006. Memorial Boulevard otherwise continues west of its split with U.S. 92 (via Wabash Avenue) to Interstate 4 at Winston. U.S. 92 follows Wabash Avenue south to New Tampa Highway west and never directly ties into Interstate 4 in Polk County. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Polk Parkway west returns to Interstate 4 via the Exit 27 trumpet interchange near the Hillsborough County line. Florida 570 Toll joins Interstate 4 with Lakeland Linder Regional Airport (LAL) at Exit 3 and Medulla at Exit 5. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Exit 28 traffic forms an exit only lane for the southward heading toll road. Interests south of Lakeland to Mulberry and Bartow should use Florida 570 Toll to Florida 37 (Florida Avenue) and U.S. 98 (Bartow Road) respectively. Photo taken 01/01/06.
The first guide sign for County Line Road (Exit 27) resides within the Polk Parkway interchange on Interstate 4. County Line Road follows the Polk/Hillsborough line southward from Swindell Road to Florida 60. Exit 27 used to consist of an exit-only lane, but completed widening allows for six overall travel lanes now. Photo taken 12/29/03.
Exit 27 departs Interstate 4 west for the eastbound beginning of Florida 570 Toll (Polk Parkway). Polk Parkway meets Florida 572 (Airport Road / Drane Field Road) in 3 and 4 miles and U.S. 98 (Bartow Road) in 10 miles. Photo taken 01/01/06.
Interstate 4 maintains a close frontage road system from Winston west to Plant City. County Line Road meanwhile meets the freeway at a folded-diamond interchange near Mt. Enon in Hillsborough. Photo taken 12/29/03.
Westbound at the Exit 25 ramp to County Line Road. County Line Road ends at Swindell Road nearby; Swindell Road and the North Frontage Road stems westward to Mt. Enon from there. South of Interstate 4, County Line Road intersects U.S. 92 at Youmans. Photo taken 05/27/05.

Sources:

  1. Polk Parkway - Florida's Turnpike.

Page Updated June 20, 2007.