North Annville Township hosted an open-house information session on Wednesday, Nov. 1, for residents to learn more about the proposed roundabout at the intersection of Clear Spring Road and Route 934.
The roundabout plan was proposed following the completion of a traffic study conducted at the intersection following the construction of a 3 million-square-foot warehouse in South Annville Township. The large warehouse raised concerns regarding traffic, primarily tractor trailer traffic, in the township.
The full report of the traffic study will be presented at the November board of supervisors meeting on Monday, Nov. 13, at 7:30 p.m. in the Union Water Works Social Hall, 2874 Waterworks Way.
In the meantime, North Annville Township residents had the opportunity to review the most recent plans for the roundabout. These plans are not finalized. Staff from Traffic Planning and Design Inc. and Warehaus attended the open house to field questions from residents regarding the anticipated timeline, roundabout design and stormwater management.
Representatives from Traffic Planning and Design stated that the roundabout plan is still about one year away from approval from PennDOT. Following approval, construction will likely last one construction season (March to November, with adjustments based on inclement weather as needed).
While construction is underway, residents can expect only one lane of traffic to be open. Additionally, while the center of the roundabout is built, both lanes will likely be closed, and detours will be implemented to redirect traffic.
Traffic Planning and Design noted that there is no definitive timeline for the construction due to unanticipated adjustments that might be needed throughout the process. North Annville Township supervisors will continue to share updates regarding the roundabout with the community.
As for the design, the roundabout itself will not have a lower speed limit than the connecting roads; however, representatives from Traffic Planning and Design assured residents that the design of the roundabout will encourage drivers to reduce their speed. The roundabout will also have truck aprons along the inner circle to accommodate larger vehicles.
The surrounding embankment will be cut down and the roundabout will be raised to improve sight-lines, as well. Additionally, the roundabout will include pedestrian and biker crosswalks.
Traffic Planning and Design shared that the roundabout was designed with longevity in mind and noted that the roundabout’s projected traffic volume for 20 years following completion will reveal wear and tear patterns.
Representatives from Warehaus presented the current stormwater drainage plans and noted that the design attempts to mimic natural water drainage patterns.
Although this was an informal open house, and no public comment session was held, residents in attendance generally expressed concerns around drivers being unfamiliar with merging into a roundabout and not reducing their speed when navigating the roundabout.
The roundabout will be funded by PennDOT and the Pennsylvania Multimodal Transportation Fund grant that was awarded to DHL-subsidiary, Exel Inc.
PennDOT’s research shows that fatalities, injuries and crashes were reduced at intersections where roundabouts were constructed. To learn more about roundabouts, visit PennDOT’s website.
To stay up to date on the progress of the roundabout, visit the North Annville Township website.
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