Grand Rapids is About to Get a Brand New Roundabout

This summer, the traffic light will go out at an unusual intersection just north of downtown Grand Rapids and be replaced with a roundabout. It will be one of the most important municipal road projects of 2023. As the city’s construction employees gear up for another busy season of roadway renovations, orange barrels, and barricades reappear across the city.

A city engineer has stated that they plan to begin working on the intersection of Coldbrook Street, Monroe Avenue, and Ottawa Avenue at the beginning of June. A fair volume of vehicles passes through the corner on an everyday basis. As drivers race to beat the light, the traffic light rarely stays red or green for its whole duration.

Grand Rapids is About to Get a Brand New Roundabout

Plan an alternate route for the summer if you regularly drive in that area. The intersection will be closed entirely with detours once construction begins.

“It’s kind of an odd intersection configuration,” Grand Rapids City Engineer Tim Burkman told MLive/The Grand Rapids Press. “… Roundabouts move traffic efficiently and safely, so we look forward to that intersection improvement.” In most years, the roundabout is finished by the end of the building season in November.

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After a bid was awarded, the $5.4 million roundabout was supposed to be built last year. Still, construction was delayed so the city could acquire materials for a different, related project. The Coldbrook Pumping Station, the oldest in the city, is being decommissioned by city personnel.

“In addition to the reconfiguration of the intersection, the project is replacing and reconfiguring multiple water mains beneath the road in that area,” Burkman said. According to Michigan Vehicle Law, the redesigned intersection will join at least three other roundabouts in the central Grand Rapids area. These intersections are with Jefferson Avenue SE, Lafayette Avenue SE, and Cherry Street SE.

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