Local News

Raleigh Council Defers Decision on Roundabouts Until Fall

Posted April 3, 2007 8:35 p.m. EDT
Updated April 3, 2007 8:56 p.m. EDT

Raleigh City Council members have deferred making a final decision on funding for the Hillsborough Street roundabout project until this fall.

Council members decided to address the issue when the design of the project is expected to be 75 percent completed. City Manager Russell Allen said construction estimates will be more accurate at that time.

In a plan approved by the council in February, the project was estimated to cost $6.3 million. Raleigh’s Capital Improvement Plan contains $2.6 million for the project, leaving a funding shortfall of $3.7 million.

In 2005, Raleigh voters approved roundabouts, or traffic circles, for Hillsborough Street as part of a $60 million bond referendum for road improvements.

Under the plan, a roundabout would be placed at the intersection of Pullen Road and Hillsborough Street near the North Carolina State University Bell Tower. A smaller roundabout would be placed at the intersection of Oberlin Road and Groveland Avenue.

City councilwoman Joyce Kekas, who led opposition against the roundabouts before February’s vote, said more needs to be done to address parking and economic development issues on the street. She points to Glenwood South and Fayetteville Street as other main drags showing signs of success without roundabouts.

Most business owners and residents in the area support the traffic circles. Property owners say they are convinced an improved Hillsborough Street with roundabouts will draw people to the neighborhood.