Raleigh, N.C. — The City Council on Tuesday approved spending $9 million to install roundabouts on Hillsborough Street between Oberlin Road and Gardner Street.
North Carolina State University also contributed money to the project. The N.C. State campus runs along Hillsborough Street for the entire stretch.
Local voters approved the roundabouts four years ago as part of a $60 million bond referendum for road improvements. The City Council has debated the details of the project ever since.
The traffic circles are seen as a way to make Hillsborough Street more pedestrian-friendly and to revitalize the area for businesses.
Councilman Philip Isley opposed the effort Tuesday, saying there are better uses for the money in the current economic environment.
"In my estimation, this is a low-hanging fruit for us to grab and determine a way to forestall any water increase or plug holes in our budget," Isley said. "I want to make a substitute motion to furlough this project for 18 months."
The motion was defeated and the council went on to approve the project.