Roundabout draws questions
Published 8:59 pm Tuesday, April 24, 2018
Members of Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) held a public hearing at the County Natural Resources and Agriculture Building at 100 Dominion Drive Thursday afternoon, where members of the public learned more about the projected roundabout at the intersection of U.S. Route 15, Farmville Road and Route 692, Kingsville Road.
Participants spoke with VDOT engineers on-site and saw preliminary designs of the roundabout.
The roundabout project, which is projected to cost a total of $2,808,037, “will consist of removing the existing intersection, access roads, signal lights and constructing a roundabout,” which will “improve traffic flow and safety concerns associated with the existing intersection,” documentation from the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) cited.
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The intersection, according to the VDOT documents and VDOT Representative Paula Jones in a previous Herald report, was ranked by VDOT as 10th for the number of fatalities.
“Of the 100 intersections reviewed in the entire district, this intersection ranked 10th for the number of fatalities,” Jones said.
Roundabout Project Manager Raina Rosado said the hearing sought to get public input, “understand what their needs are, make adjustments,” and move forward to the final design for the roundabout.
County Administrator Wade Bartlett attended the hearing and expressed concern that customers of both The Fishin’ Pig or the adjacent convenience store, entering the roundabout from Kingsville Road, would not be able to make a left turn to enter the parking lot to the convenience store due to a splitter, or a cement isle that would divide U.S. Route 15 North and U.S. Route 15 South.
“It’s good that they have a public hearing to have citizens come out,” Bartlett said.
Bartlett said about the roundabout, he was “a little worried about this. Made that well-known to VDOT.”
Trisha Wright and Robin Wright Vincent, property owners of The Fishin’ Pig and the Hampden-Sydney Citgo convenience store, also attended the hearing and expressed similar concern about the potential effect of the roundabout on the properties and traffic.
Tom Baldwin, who no longer lives in the area but said he grew up in Prince Edward County, said that the intersection is dangerous, but said the roundabout could hurt or help.
“It’s hard to tell how it’s going to affect it,” Baldwin said.
Rosado said in speaking with members of the public, the reaction to the roundabout is “a mixed bag, but I would say most people support it.”
The opportunity for public comments will end Sunday, April 29, or May 4 in the case of inclement weather.
For those who want to email or call in comments or concerns, Rosado can be contacted at Raina.Rosado@vdot.virginia.gov, referencing “Route 15, Farmville Road Public Comments” in the subject line, or mailed to 4219 Campbell Ave., Lynchburg, VA 24501.