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March 16, 2011

10

City planning $11 million double roundabout at 14th and Superior

by Deena Winter

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The city is buying up property along 14th Street from Superior Street to Alvo Road to make way for a nearly $11 million, two-mile road project whose centerpiece will be the city’s first double roundabout at 14th and Superior.

The project will be paid for with city dollars, according to Devin Biesecker, who works in engineering services for the city public works department. The project is in the final design phase and will be advertised for bids later this year, with construction slated to begin in one year.

Biesecker said the Nebraska Department of Roads also plans to build a new bridge over Interstate 80 on 14th Street later this year.

The city considered putting a traditional intersection at 14th and Superior, with dual left turns, two through lanes and a right turning lane — and the estimated cost was $10.2 million (in 2009). But city models indicated a roundabout would handle traffic better than a traditional intersection.

Roundabouts are considered much safer than regular intersections — but they can be pricier. The city has about 20 roundabouts now.

Biesecker said a large volume of traffic goes through the intersection and the nearby two-lane county road needs improvement.

“The area north of Superior along 14th has been growing making the need even greater for a project along north 14th Street,” he said in an e-mail. “Also, NDOR is willing to build a new bridge over I-80 in conjunction with this project. This project allows us to get a bridge built that meets the traffic needs of the area. The intersection needs improvement to handle the amount of traffic at this location.”

The city has roundabouts at the following intersections:
33rd and Sheridan Blvd.
40th and Sheridan Blvd.
W. Alvo and Tallgrass Pkwy
W. Alvo and Stonebrook Pkwy
Fallbrook Blvd and Tallgrass Pkwy
Fallbrook Blvd and Stonebrook Pkwy
Augusta Dr. and Troon Dr.
49th and Francis
Eiger and Andermatt
98th and Pine Lake
98th and Old Cheney
NW 13th and W. Fletcher
32nd and Zermatt Dr.
16th and Chloe Lane
Amaranth & SW 4th
Trinidad Rd. and Humphrey Av.
Glenneagle Ct and Augusta Dr.
21st and Folkways

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10 Comments Post a comment
  1. Paul Mike Grieger
    Mar 16 2011

    what about 14 and cornhusker…the north front door to “innovation park
    why not clean it up from the old state fair grounds directly to I-80.

    I am sure vision 2015 has this on their to do list…

    Reply
  2. Fletch
    Mar 16 2011

    You people really can’t stand the Vision 2015 folks, can you?

    Reply
    • ej
      Mar 17 2011

      Envy and jealousy are ugly things. Rather than sit around bellyaching, Vision 2015 has actually done something. They have the wherewithal and are willing to put their money where their mouths are. How anyone can begrudge them for that, I’ll never understand.

      Reply
  3. Denise Kjar
    Mar 16 2011

    From piegirl – The idea of this project is horrifying – I work in the immediate area and the speed as well as the volume on Superior is scary. How will large semis work on a roundabout. It’s the speed that concerns me the most. Surprise – I don’t like Vision 2015 either!

    Reply
  4. carol
    Mar 16 2011

    not wanted and not needed by this area…ask the city for it’s “lost” survey of the residents….

    Reply
  5. Mar 17 2011

    The city’s ‘listening meetings’ with the public indicated that their decision had already been made. Paying lip service to the people who pass through that intersection daily was just to pacify the residents who think they actually had some say in the matter. A roundabout in an area like 14th and Superior with the volume of traffic it handles daily would be a disaster. I hope I’m wrong but betting I’m not. At peak periods, traffic will be backed up even further than it is today. yikes. Find another route.

    Reply
  6. In the real
    Mar 20 2011

    Don’t forget to vote for Deena.

    Reply
  7. natefrog
    Mar 30 2011

    Deena: You keep proclaiming that roundabouts can be pricier than traditional intersections and I’d like to see your data. Do you have a breakdown of what the immediate costs of a traditional intersection vs. a roundabout at 14th & Superior are? Do you know the annual maintenance and electricity costs for each intersection type? Have you analyzed insurance data to determine which intersection is cheaper to policy-holders? Have you calculated accident rates to determine if spending more money for safety is worth it? Have you calculated average wait times at the competing intersections and calculated fuel costs for motorists over a time period?

    Also, your headline is very misleading. Stop writing as though the roundabout alone will cost $11m when in fact the entire 2-mile project (including the roundabout) is what will cost $11m. Such (purposely?) deceptive writing makes one question your honesty.

    Reply
  8. Judy
    Apr 4 2011

    Deena –
    As one of the people who filled out a “lost” survey — I am totally against the idea of a multi-lane roundabout. Single lane roundabouts are bad enough — and most people don’t signal at all when they use the one at 40th and Sheridan as it is — which makes using the intersection a cross between a guessing game and Russian Roulette. The thought of a multi-lane roundabout at such a busy intersection (which I traverse at least twice a day) is terrifying. Who’s going to teach people how to properly use it? The city would be better served in the long run by adding turn lanes.

    Reply

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  1. City proceeding with 14th and Superior roundabout against neighbors’ wishes | Winterized

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