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A New Road Leads To Jacksonville's National Cemetery

Jessica Palombo
Flags adorn the graves at the National Cemetery in Jacksonville in this file photo from 2017.

The Florida Department of Transportation has completed construction of the new access road to the Jacksonville National Cemetery in north Jacksonville. The roadway, locally named Arnold Road, opened to traffic Monday, Sept. 13.

The road improves access the Jacksonville National Cemetery located at 4083 Lannie Road on the Northside. The new road is meant to reduce traffic congestion on Lannie Road and will provide a more direct route to the cemetery from Jacksonville International Airport and I-95.

Cemetery visitors traveling on I-95 will now be able to access the cemetery via the Pecan Park Road exit.

“This is a wonderful way to honor our service members, by providing better access to family and friends who want to visit their loved ones in their final resting place – a place of beauty and tranquility,” said FDOT District 2 Secretary Greg Evans in an email to WJCT News. “After many years of planning, funding and construction, with the help of numerous veterans’ organizations, assistance from the city of Jacksonville and the Support Committee of the Jacksonville National Cemetery, the new roadway will support access to the cemetery. I am proud the Florida Department of Transportation was able to play a role in honoring our nation’s heroes."  

Anderson Columbia Co., Inc. began construction of the $13.1 million road in June 2019. The new 3.4-mile, two-lane roadway connects Lannie Road, at the Ethel Road intersection, to Arnold Road and Pecan Park Road. 

map showing the new road

“This new roadway has been a long time coming,” said state Sen. Aaron Bean, R-Fernandina Beach. “I am proud to stand with FDOT, the city of Jacksonville and everyone who has worked so hard in getting this roadway completed. This is a great win for our military veterans and their families.”

The new road includes bike lanes, paved shoulders, sidewalks, drainage ponds and a new bridge over Seaton Creek, adjacent to Seaton Creek Preserve. 

“Losing a loved one is a traumatic experience,” said state Rep. Angie Nixon, D-Jacksonville. “Having easier access to the National Cemetery is essential to the grieving and healing process for the families. I am proud to support the Department of Transportation and honor those who have served.”

The 526-acre Jacksonville National Cemetery opened in 2009 after the National Cemetery Expansion Act of 2003 authorized six new national cemeteries for military veterans and their families.

Ownership of the roadway will be transferred to the city of Jacksonville following the conclusion of final construction activities in October, weather and unforeseen circumstances permitting.