The first roundabout in Winona County is "virtually complete," Winona County Engineer Dave Kramer said.
A construction crew stripes the asphalt surrounding the nearly completed roundabout at County Road 17 and 15 Tuesday.
Crews painted white stripes on the smooth asphalt on County Road 17 and County Road 15 with white paint Tuesday afternoon, one of the last tasks of the five-month long project.
“To date, crews have removed the old roadway, replaced storm sewers and water mains, put down new crush rock aggregate and asphalt, and seeded the landscape,” Kramer said. “It’s getting really close to being done.”
Kramer said the construction crews have until the end of October to complete the nearly one-mile $3.39 million project, but noted work is ahead of schedule.
“It’s looking like the crew might be done in a couple weeks,” Kramer said. “All they have left to do is finish striping the road and install signs.”
The roundabout project was approved in March 2011. Kramer said the project was designed to provide the intersection with much needed structural upgrades and accommodate the projected increase in traffic.
“From what I understand, it’s going to alleviate the traffic backups in the morning at the stop sign coming off Pleasant Valley Road, and it’s in line with the traffic projections for the next 20 years,” Kramer said.
The roundabout, Kramer said, will allow traffic to move through the area more efficiently. He said this kind of traffic junction has a high safety rating with a lower number of crashes and serious injuries than at conventional traffic signal intersections.
“I think it’s certainly going to take a good amount of time for people to get used to,” Kramer said. “But I’m confident in the project and I think this was the best option out of all the alternatives that were studied.”