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East End News

Traffic circle installation on Chimborazo, M Street intersections next week

From the Department of Public Works:

Lane Closure – M Street and S Street
WHO: City of Richmond Department of Public Works

WHAT: Lane Closure

WHEN: Monday, July 28 through Friday, August 29, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

WHERE: The following intersections will be impacted:

· M Street between 27th Street and 32nd Street

· S Street and 31st Street

BACKGROUND: There will be lane closures in the aforementioned area to allow for installation of residential traffic circles at the intersections of M Street and 27th Street, 30th Street and 32nd Street.

Lane Closure – Chimborazo Boulevard
WHO: City of Richmond Department of Public Works

WHAT: Lane Closure

WHEN: Monday, July 28 through Friday, August 29, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

WHERE: The following intersections will be impacted:

· Chimborazo Boulevard and Marshall Street

· Chimborazo Boulevard and N Street

BACKGROUND: There will be lane closures in the aforementioned area to allow for installation of residential traffic circles.

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36 comments

philoconn 07/24/2014 at 9:41 AM

As someone that lives near this installation and regularly runs/walks/walks the dog along this road, I’m hopeful that these will deter folks from speeding/passing one another. Only a few months after moving to the area, I was involved in an accident at 27th & M when someone ran a stop sign and hit me.

25mph folks and stop signs should not be confused with yield.

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Gordo 07/24/2014 at 10:02 AM

Many drivers in our community are too dumb to understand traffic circles. If you dont believe me, go to the shops at laburnum and watch how many near wrecks are caused by people trying to figure out how to yield

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katzenjaammer 07/24/2014 at 12:37 PM

I’ll reiterate my comments about Chimbo and Marshall; I live here and I don’t see a speeding problem on this end of Marshall. Certainly the street is so bad N-S on Chimbo that you can’t go faster than 25, anyway, and roundabouts just replace one problem with another. My vote was No Thanks.

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edg 07/24/2014 at 1:47 PM

omg – I can’t believe these are going forward. No matter how many people complained, there is no stopping the traffic circles.

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William Ryan Hamlet 07/24/2014 at 2:58 PM

I live on 25th and M, we have lots of traffic but also lots of pedestrians. Though there have been almost no wrecks as far as I know, plenty of near misses and plenty of angry honking. If the city insists on using more traffic circles, I would love to see speed bumps installed before the cross walks to force people to yield.

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Dave 07/24/2014 at 4:34 PM

@ 4… I live near this intersection too and I think the circle here is completely unneccesary. I think it will increase the speed of traffic through there vs. slowing it down. The circles further up Marshall have done just that IMO.

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Lee 07/24/2014 at 5:17 PM

@ GORDO

While I have mixed feelings about traffic circles in general, the circles at the laburnum shopping center are more oddly/badly designed than anything else (different turning lanes/designs for each circle, T shaped junctions where you can see your destination, but can’t actually get to it, etc.). I’m not sure I would use that as an example of well executed traffic circles

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edg 07/24/2014 at 5:21 PM

Dave, I think your observations are in sync with what we all have observed on Marshall. Why do they keep spending all this money to install them? I know I talked to Tom Flynn (the traffic engineer guy) till I was blue in the face and he just could not accept this fact. I don’t think I was the only one that responded to the public inquiry (or whatever they called it) to voice my opinion against the circles. This guy is determined to put them in.

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katzenjaammer 07/24/2014 at 7:12 PM

I’m not a traffic engineer but I used to date one. I once saw a budget for a road project which priced out speed bumps at $5,000 each. If that’s true then Lord only knows what a roundabout costs. Seems like a very expensive planter!

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William Ryan Hamlet 07/24/2014 at 7:37 PM

then stop signs are cheap and work just fine.

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edg 07/24/2014 at 7:59 PM

I don’t know about this particular circle, but the one they proposed for 25th and 9 mile was about 30,000. I would rather get a trash can and a shelter for the bus stop down the block from the blue wheeler.

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Next Friend 07/25/2014 at 8:44 AM

Right on edg. Let’s all aggressively see click fix that block of Marshall that needs the trash can. That stop needs a can more than any other and the neighborhood association shouldn’t have to pay for it.

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Thomas 07/25/2014 at 9:05 AM

I take M St toward downtown to work every morning because it is the one lateral street that doesn’t have a stop sign or sketchy-visibility roundabout every other block. Typically I am a proponent of roundabouts, but in this installation they are no more useful than yield signs, nor are they – at such a scale – much more pleasing to the eye. Bring on the roundabout at Belvidere and Broad and others such as the one at 25th and M which handle complex or high-volume traffic conditions as roundabouts do so well, but please forgo these chintzy things, which will do nothing to help move traffic laterally across the neighborhood as our density increases.

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Kathleen Onufer 07/25/2014 at 9:13 AM

Related to the trash can at the bus stop, I received these instructions from GRTC to request stop amenities: “If you have concerns about specific bus stops, GRTC and the City have a process for reviewing requests for amenities. If you call the main GRTC number (804-358-3871) and leave your contact information with the receptionist, along with your specific concerns about a given stop (no shelter, no trashcan, etc.), someone will respond. GRTC does evaluate every request, and recommends approval for those that meet the criteria for installation unless there are significant mitigating circumstances.”

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edg 07/25/2014 at 9:35 AM

I don’t know how to stop them from installing the circles. I sent an email with my position to the Dept of Public works, talked to Tom Flynn, and contacted Newbille – who never got back to me. I think we are helpless against their installation, which really aggravates me.

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Gordo 07/25/2014 at 9:55 AM

I think we should install dukes of hazarrad style ramps so the traffic going east -west can jump over the traffic going north-south.

It would be only slightly more stupid than traffic circles.

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Sam 07/25/2014 at 10:19 AM

Traffic circles are BS. They are a waste of money. How about pay for some cobblestone speed bumps in strategic places where people are speeding habitually…. like the E broad stretch on Chimbo Park, Marshall…

I think these circles are more of a hazard, than what they are worth. Most people fly around them in excess of 35 mph (which you can easily) and most people are confused by them?….. Who knows how to properly yield anyway? I will personally install these stone bumps for the city, for $2000 each, saving the city thousands, if no one else will…. And throw in the trash can installs!

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chpnfan 07/25/2014 at 10:31 AM Reply
Neighbors Too 07/25/2014 at 10:32 AM

Traffic Circles are designed for a “purpose” and I am sure studies have been performed so, why do you think they don’t work opposed to them actually doing what they were designed for? Aesthetically I like them.

And how would you propose redesigning them to work properly at these mentioned intersections?

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Thomas 07/25/2014 at 10:41 AM

I like Sam’s plan.

If the city wants to be roundabout-happy, we could use one at the intersection of E.Clay St, Jefferson Ave, and N 22nd St in front of Alamo. This is a very confusing intersection and I have seen the lights run inadvertently by people who don’t know better many times. I think in that case a roundabout could be great, and there is room for one in the intersection. In the above cases though, what is the point?

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Lt. 07/25/2014 at 11:36 AM

Do we agree there is a difference between a roundabout and a “residential traffic circle.” I feel the roundabout at 25th and Jefferson serves that intersection well. But the “residential traffic circles” scattered through the area just turn the intersections into free for alls. You don’t have to slow down to go straight or turn right. The only time they slow traffic is when you have to turn left and some just take the inside. Clearly visible stop signs are better.

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Gordo 07/25/2014 at 12:01 PM

My duke boy plan would work too!

To be effective, the traffic circle has to be big enough to force teh cars going around it to slow down. The ones they have installed in CHurch Hill so far do not do this.

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BK 07/25/2014 at 9:33 PM

@23 that’s exactly right. The current circles, like the ones over by Chimborazo elementary, are small enough wherein you barely have to turn your steering wheel in order to maneuver around them. If they were bigger, and you had to really make a hard right, then a hard left, you’d be forced to slow down. As it stands you don’t really have to slow down all that much in order to navigate them. Make them a real obstacle and you’d actually be doing something.

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edg 08/01/2014 at 1:40 PM

They had installed a couple of traffic counters on Marshall street, right in front of the school. We saw the traffic engineer taking them down yesterday. And guess what – he told us that due to the high volume of traffic on this road, they are going to replace the stop signs at 29th and 31st and Marshall! I have no official confirmation – this is just what the man taking down the traffic counters told us.

So, I guess the circle really are just very expensive planters.

So – are they going to go forward with the new one at Chimborazo anyway?

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Lee 08/01/2014 at 3:14 PM

Apparently, if they make them bigger busses, fire trucks, and delivery vehicles can’t get around them. In a discussion with a neighbor, I suggested ovals, but I think we concluded that they wouldn’t work either, geometrically. Also, the residential “circles” are relatively affordable, while the roundabout at Jefferson, 25th, and M was supposedly quite expensive. This is just hearsay, though, if anyone has better info/specifics please share!

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katzenjaammer 08/01/2014 at 4:13 PM

Part of my response to the city traffic engineer *was* about the small diameter of the circles being ineffective and so, unsuitable for the area; parking concerns, right of way, all the things Lee said here. I also said, “I don’t know what the answer is, but it’s not this”. I’m thinking they don’t know, either.

I just have to wonder, with all the urgent needs we have, why this is suddenly a priority.

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edg 08/01/2014 at 4:21 PM

I think I was not clear – what I meant to say, was this man indicated that they will be putting the stop signs back up at the Chimbo traffic circles on Marshall. I guess they will leave the circles there, just add the stop signs back.

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