Cary hopes to learn from Raleigh's roundabout experience

Posted March 15, 2011

— Town officials are considering constructing three traffic circles to speed traffic through the heart of Cary.

Cary wants to install roundabouts on Chatham Street at Durham and Old Apex roads and on Walnut Street at Kildaire Farm Road. The town plans to use an $800,000 federal grant to pay the bulk of the estimated $1 million cost of the project, which could begin next year.

"Anything that can help bring traffic downtown and keep traffic moving in a reasonable manner is going to help us downtown," business owner Sheila Ogle said.

Downtown Cary traffic Cary hopes to learn from Raleigh's roundabout experience

Other business owners also said they are willing to put up with torn-up streets and traffic detours to get the roundabouts in place.

"When they build this, it will be a little inconvenient getting through, but we can live through that because we're going to like it when it's over," said Ralph Ashworth, whose family-owned drug store has been in downtown Cary for more than 50 years.

In Raleigh, construction on Hillsborough Street and Oberlin Road to install roundabouts two years ago disrupted businesses, and the finished product was a little confusing for some drivers. City officials even printed instructional brochures to teach drivers how to use the roundabouts.

"There's a lot of lessons learned on that project, (and) we'll be talking to the folks who worked on that one to make the ones a little smoother over here in Cary," said Todd Delk, a transportation planning engineer for Cary.


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  • gopack07 Mar 17, 2011

    "NJ ripped out almost all the traffic circles years ago.... cause they dont work!"

    They don't work when people don't know how to use them. I lived in Australia for a couple years and stop signs really don't exist...only roundabouts. It was nice to have a good flow of traffic instead of the stop.go.stop.go...granted we drove clockwise in them :)

  • demo7691 Mar 17, 2011

    Yeah learn that it was a waste of money

  • gunny462 Mar 16, 2011

    "The town plans to use an $800,000 federal grant to pay the bulk of the estimated $1 million cost of the project, which could begin next year"

    Yup another waste of taxpayer's money.

    "Anything that can help bring traffic downtown"

    And increase traffic tickets as well I'm sure.

  • I Change This Name Daily Mar 16, 2011

    cary needs more roundabouts to circle the strip malls that have pretty town regulated signs

  • PickAnotherID Mar 16, 2011

    I can't believe Cary is planning one of these for the Walnut St - Kildaire Farm Rd intersection. Did they forget there's an Elementary School at that intersection? Even with the current light, it's bad some days for kids trying to cross Kildaire Farm Rd. If the round-about means drivers don't have to stop at all any more, it's going to be a mess. At least the light let a crossing guard get in position without getting run over. This is a bad decision.

  • turkeydance Mar 15, 2011

    +1 to robin. Cary ain't about to pay for it.
    roundabouts are approximately $1.2 Million each.
    that's from start to finish including the local
    meetings with PAID state engineers attending, to
    final ribbon cutting.

  • deyberg Mar 15, 2011

    As I see it, every corner in Cary and elsewhere in NC has roundabouts as I have had so many near misses of stupid drivers that are turning right without stopping into incoming traffic. grrrrr. We could pay for new roads and roundabouts with the traffic ticke money raised if the police would just sit and stake out any insection here in Cary.

  • dmj Mar 15, 2011

    I can think of a lot more things more valuable for federal money to go to than some roundabout experiment.

  • lolly Mar 15, 2011

    ROFL. I think roundabouts will work great in Cary. I drive on the one on Hillsborough frequently. A clueless person on
    the phone speeding thru a roundabout is a hazard. Lots of nice people in Cary, will be able to meet lots of other nice people, when they have collisions.

  • imtiredofit Mar 15, 2011

    Maybe the Town of Cary will use the same road engineers that designed Maynard road in front of Mr Bowden's home in Cary to create the roundabouts. That engineering design certainly has worked well........