New roundabout project started in Grand Island
A ten million dollar roundabout project started in Grand Island Thursday. The Old Potash Highway and Claude Paving Project will add four roundabouts on Old Potash Highway and intersecting streets of Wilmer Avenue, Claude and North Road. There will also be one on Claude and Faidley Avenue as well.
"We're adding some lanes here and there. We're adding several roundabouts and this should give the capacity that's needed here," said John Collins, engineer director at Grand Island Public Works.
The project will address residents concerns and will attempt to fix them. It will improve traffic flow, limit accidents, improve drainage, increase traffic capacity, make it safer for vehicles and bicyclists, and replace old pavement. Many businesses have popped up over the years in these areas and have caused more traffic.
"This should have been done probably ten years ago in anticipation of this. We're catching it now while traffic is pretty heavy. If we waited another ten years, businesses would actually be losing business because of all the congestion."
Streets will permanently change once this project is finished, "There will be no left turns permitted from Diers to Old Potash ever again but by extending Kaufman out, building a little piece to Claude and putting the roundabout on Claude and Old Potash, It'll actually be much easier to come down and make that little walk," said Collins.
A section of Faidley Avenue and Claude Road is closed starting Thursday. It will be shutdown for about 90 days. After this project is done they will move on to the intersection of Old Potash Highway and North Road.
The entire project will take years to complete and is expected to done in October of 2022.