GREENFIELD — After a few months of easy driving, motorists passing through the city’s northeast side will be detoured once again starting next week as work resumes on the roundabout at New Road and Apple Street.
With warmer weather setting in, crews are scheduled to resume construction at the busy intersection Monday.
“The orange barrels are coming back out,” said Marc Hollingsworth, project manager.
Hollingsworth, who works for USI Consultants, oversees the project. The roundabout is being constructed by E&B Paving, and the city of Greenfield is paying for the work.
Some portion of the roundabout, starting with the western leg, will be closed from now through early June, Hollingsworth said.
Detour and warning signs reminding drivers the road will be closed have been up for several days. Hollingsworth is hoping motorists will avoid the intersection altogether whenever possible.
An estimated 9,500 vehicles pass through the intersection daily.
Starting Monday, all westbound traffic on New Road will have to drive south on Apple Street, then west on McKenzie Road, to reach State Street.
Managing traffic flow for the roundabout at Apple Street and New Road has been difficult because the intersection serves as the only entrance to the Hickory Hills subdivision.
As a result, workers have not been able to completely close off the intersection at various points during construction as they have with other roundabouts in the city.
“Originally, the contractor had their schedule to have it completely done by the end of 2012,” said Karla Vincent, city engineer.
But having to maintain access to Hickory Hills slowed the work considerably.
By comparison, the roundabout at Franklin Street and New Road began around the same time as the one at Apple Street and New Road. It opened in November.
The traffic circle at Apple Street and New Road will not be fully functional until early June. The contract completion date is June 28.
The roundabout was open during the winter months, but crews always knew that would be temporary, Hollingsworth said.
“The contractor worked well into the winter to get it open and functional so the city of Greenfield would not have a nightmare on their hands,” he said. “They did what they could to try to relieve any hardship that they could … with snow removal and traffic situations.”
This marks the fifth roundabout built in Greenfield in the last four years.
Once the Apple Street and New Road roundabout is complete, there will be six in the city and no immediate plans for more.
The first roundabout in Greenfield was built at McKenzie Road and Broadway Street in 2004. Two roundabouts were completed in 2010, at McKenzie Road and Apple Street; and McKenzie Road and Franklin Street. In 2011, a fourth roundabout was completed at McKenzie and Meridian roads. The last roundabout, at Franklin Street and New Road, has been open for four months.