The Okaloosa County Board of Commissioners discussed two motions concerning the new Crestview bypass project during a meeting at the courthouse on Tuesday morning. The first motion dealt with typical sections of the roadway, while the second motion dealt with obtaining right-of-ways for the bypass. Both motions were unanimously approved.

CRESTVIEW — The Okaloosa County Commission approved two motions Tuesday that will help move forward the building of a new bypass in Crestview.

The first motion was to approve the Typical Section Package for Phase V and the East-West Connector of the bypass. The package explains the difference of the two areas of land that will be used to build the bypass.

The first area is the urban areas where developments such as office buildings already exist. The second area is considered rural because the property around it is full of woods.

Most of the developed land along the east-west connector for the bypass is near State Road 85. The building of the connector will not affect the buildings already there, other than the possibility of adding a sidewalk in front of the buildings.

“One of the concerns we had because the project is moving at an accelerated rate is that we didn't want any surprises in the future,” County Public Work Director Jason Autrey said. “We want to make the design of the sections now because it is critical as we acquire property."

The second motion dealt with executing a task order with HDR Engineering Inc. to help obtain right of way for the bypass.

The motion allows HDR to work with the county to begin speaking with property owners where the bypass will be built. The county will need to get permission from them to acquire a small portion of the property that runs parallel to the bypass to keep the road from infringing on their property. The county needs to gain the right of way for up to 40 pieces of land.

“In order to make timelines work for this project, we have to advance our right of way acquisition process,” Autrey said. “We’ll take information that is obtained from this task order, and that will allow staff to begin the discussion with individual property owners to obtain the rights of way.”

Obtaining the title of any right of way needed for the bypass is part of the requirements for obtaining a grant from Triumph Gulf Coast.

“If we want to get the $64 million from Triumph, we need to accelerate our right of way process,” Autrey said.