Julie Jennings was walking on Wheeler Road Monday, but when she drives, she's a regular at the intersection of Wheeler Road and Aumond Road and she's doesn't want to be driving circles. "I would prefer the four-way stop. I think we already have some problems here, I think it would compound the problems that we already have," she said.
Augusta Traffic engineers are addressing intersection problems by proposing creating a roundabout here with a landscaped island in the center, at a cost of $1 million. They say it will make the intersection safer.
"We've had about six right angle accidents. We could fix t-bones there last year and they would go away with the roundabout. The volumes you're talking at Aumond and Wheeler...a roundabout would melt that traffic over there," says Augusta Traffic Engineer Steve Cassell.
Gloria Norwood has lived next to the intersection for eight years and says the sound of car colliding often rings through the neighborhood. "People down the street several houses hear those accidents, then the police, ambulances, and all of that which is what occurs with accidents," she said.
Traffic engineers say a roundabout would reduce the wrecks, but it would also reduce some of the neighbor's property because their land will be needed to build it.
"How much are you taking?" we asked Cassell. "Probably about twenty feet, from the corner, so you're looking at maybe twenty feet," he said.
And, some of that twenty feet is in the yard of Gloria Norwood, but she is willing to sacrifice some of her lawn in the name of making the intersection better. "This [is] a wonderful opportunity for us to improve this intersection. As you sit here, you can see the traffic in the middle of the day, how much we have, and a roundabout will solve many of our problems. It will take a little bit of my property, but actually I have so much yard I'd be glad to give them more," she said.
A roundabout public information meeting will be Tuesday night from 6:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m. at Tutt Middle School. The proposed roundabout for Skinner Mill Road and Boy Scout Road will also be discussed.
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