MIAMI (CBSMiami) -- Crews broke ground on a project aimed to save lives and make Krome Avenue, long known as one of the most dangerous roads in South Florida, a safer place.
"Last year alone, we recorded 12 fatalities out here on Krome. This year we have a total of three so I don't think anyone can dispute that this road needed major improvements to lighting, widening the emergency lanes," said Joe Sanchez of Florida Highway Patrol.
His mother, Rita Rodriguez, started the "Lost Lives of Krome Avenue Foundation" to rally for change.
"After further research, we've found that there's been over 200 people who have died on Krome Avenue," said Rodriguez. "It's a long time coming. It's bee 50 years and they haven't done anything on this road and a lot of innocent lives that have been lost."
Construction for the first part of the project officially begins on Monday. The first part of the construction will span 7 miles from Tamiami Trail to Kendall Drive.
The Friday groundbreaking is the first of a total of 22 projects that will span from Okechoobee Road to Homestead.
Krome Avenue is currently a two-lane road, with one going each way but after the construction, that will be changed to two lanes each way with a divider in the middle.
According to state officials it's going to take about 10 years to complete the 22 different projects designed to make Krome Avenue a safer place. The total cost is estimated at $300 million.
For Rodriguez, the change came too late but she hopes no one else will go through what she's gone through and she vows not to let those who've died on Krome be forgotten.
"I'm looking to get a piece of land so we can put up a monument for all the lost lives because I don't want them to be forgotten...all the people who have perished here innocently," said Rodriguez.
Click here to view a map of the project.
for more features.