Commuters crossing through the intersection of Brookfield Road and North Avenue may soon find some relief in their delays.
A Waukesha County project set to begin in mid-June will see the crossroads become a roundabout with the goal of improving traffic flow.
"We wanted to address the delays that are occurring during peak hours," said Allison Bussler, Waukesha County director of public works. "Roundabouts reduce accidents, especially severe accidents, because you don't get the T-bone collisions that you do at conventional intersections. Roundabouts are a traffic-calming device. Everyone has to slow down."
Discussions on improving the intersection have been going on since last year. The City of Brookfield was given the opportunity to comment on the project and expressed support for the county's desire for a roundabout.
"It's an intersection that has backed up routinely, particularly in the evening rush hour and during school let-out time," said City of Brookfield Director of Public Works Tom Grisa. "We agreed last year that a roundabout was the best option."
The roundabout will be the second in the city, with the first residing at North and Barker roads.
"This will be a little smaller than that one so we expect traffic to move through this one more easily," Grisa said. "Roundabouts have been popping up all over the area and the state."
Bussler noted that there were concerns expressed by some in regard to commuters understanding roundabouts.
"There are some folks that don't quite understand how they work and they were concerned," Bussler said. "People are going to have to go a little slower until they are used to it."
The county acquired small strips of land from properties located at the intersection, but Bussler says that very little acquisition was required, and the implementation of a traffic signal would have demanded more.
The county hopes the project can be completed by mid-August.
The entire project, including design, construction and land acquisition, is expected to cost around $925,000.
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