Fed up with traffic to the beach? A shortcut may be on the way.

Heading to Fort Lauderdale beach could become less of a headache for airport visitors and others.

A $35 million-plus shortcut is proposed to and from the 17th Street Causeway. The bypass would allow northbound beach-goers on Federal Highway or others coming from the west on State Road 84 to avoid a congested section of Southeast 17th Street and its four traffic lights.

Instead, drivers could head east at the State Road 84-Spangler Boulevard intersection with U.S. 1 — the southern entrance into Port Everglades. The bypass would follow the fringes of the port and avoid the port’s security checkpoint. It would then curve north on Eisenhower Boulevard alongside the Broward County Convention Center and meet up with 17th Street.

Basically, the bypass would cut away from U.S. 1 and avoid the heavier traffic approaching 17th Street.

The plans are included in the proposal for expanding the Broward County Convention Center and building a convention center hotel. The bypass also could be used by people going to events at the convention center.

The hotel is planned to be at the southeast corner of 17th Street and Eisenhower Boulevard.

Seventeenth Street is one of the most traffic-clogged in the city, and Fort Lauderdale officials have demanded a bypass as part of the convention center plans to keep the congestion from getting worse.

“If you can have a parallel route that’s going to especially capture those folks coming from the south, I think we’re going to see a definite improvement on 17th Street,” said Fort Lauderdale Commissioner Ben Sorensen, who has been working with Broward Commissioner Tim Ryan and county officials to find an acceptable plan.

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