Ever since a roundabout became part of the Uptown redevelopment plan I have joked that we ought to set up cones in the parking lot at one of the high schools so some of us can practice driving in a traffic circle.
When the circle finally opens to traffic Monday, March 2, I would love to be there with a video camera to capture what I believe will be a non-event.
My council packet arrived Thursday with a new brochure that diagrams proper traffic circle movements. The brochure says the circle is “as easy as yield, enter, and exit.”
Let’s hope we don’t need those cones after all.
I could be wrong, but somehow I think we’ll collectively manage to negotiate our way through the circle without too much difficulty — as long as there aren’t many pedestrians and cyclists in the beginning. (We’ll have to get used to them eventually when the trail finally reopens. Yeah, I’m ready for that to happen, too.)
Here are the directions for Uptown Circle:
- Slow down as you approach the circle.
- Yield to pedestrians and bicyclists.
- Yield to traffic in the circle, wait for an acceptable gap in traffic, and then enter the circle while maintaining a slow speed.
- Within the circle, do not stop except to avoid a collision; you have the right-of-way over entering traffic; Always travel in a counterclockwise direction.
- Exit the circle at your desired point, again always yielding for pedestrians and bicyclists.
Actually, Mar. 2 will bring several changes to the Uptown traffic scene:
- Weather permitting, underground utility and street construction will begin Monday on North St. between Fell Ave. and Uptown Circle. Businesses remain open. Sidewalks will be open for pedestrians. This is a very critical time for these businesses. Please keep them in mind during the construction period which hopefully will be brief and smooth. Actually, the target for reopening this stretch of North St. is mid-to-late summer.
- The intersection of Beaufort St. and Broadway Ave. is currently closed. This intersection is anticipated to reopen to local traffic on Mar. 2, and to all traffic sometime late summer.
- The block of West Beaufort St. between Uptown Circle and Broadway Ave. is anticipated to open to local traffic on Mar. 2. The entire stretch of Beaufort is anticipated to open to all traffic sometime late summer. In other words, the block of West Beaufort between Fell Ave. and Broadway Ave. will finally reopen when the Marriott Hotel and Conference Center opens in late summer.
- The northbound late of Constitution Blvd. from Uptown Circle to College will open for traffic Mar. 2.
This is an exciting time. Thank you for your continued patience through Uptown’s transformation.
And good luck on the circle.