Critics say new 417 bike path over Lake Jesup could be dangerous

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SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. —

A new bike path is causing controversy in Seminole County.

Some say the path could put bikers and drivers in danger.

The path would allow bikers to ride on a heavily traveled part of State Road 417 over Lake Jesup near Sanford.

The Florida Turnpike Enterprise wants to spend nearly $1 million to add the new 5-mile stretch of bike path along the 417 from State Road 434 to an area north of County Road 427.

The bike path would have signs and stripes and raised rumble strips to alert drivers if they drift into the path, but no barrier.

The path would allow cyclists to ride in the 10-foot wide shoulder over three bridges, including the 2-mile span over Lake Jesup.

The speed limit along the Lake Jesup Bridge is 65 mph, but drivers seem to sail by much faster than that.

Some county officials question whether bikes belong on highways.

One Seminole commissioner criticized the proposed bike path over Lake Jesup as a "million dollar deathtrap."

But cyclists like John Wayne said they'd love to ride over the lake. As for safety, Wayne, who told WFTV he just woke from a 15-year coma caused by a head injury, said it's not highways that scare him; It's driveways.