Roundabout construction starts Monday at State and Ellsworth intersection
Amy Biolchini | AnnArbor.com
Crews working for the Washtenaw County Road Commission will begin a four-month-long, $2.4 million construction project Monday to convert the stoplight-controlled intersection into a two-lane roundabout.
Officials initiated the project as a way to better manage traffic flow along the busy State Street corridor - an issue they projected would worsen with the 2012 opening of the Costco store on Ellsworth Road just west of State Street.
Road closures won’t begin right away while the preliminary site work is conducted for the first one to two weeks.
The Road Commission anticipates the first road closures will begin in mid-June. One lane of traffic in each direction on State Street will remain open throughout the project, though sections of Ellsworth Road will be completely blocked to drivers.
Drivers are advised to avoid the construction zone, as delays are anticipated.
The western section of Ellsworth Road will be the first road closure, which will begin in mid-June and last for about a month.
Detours will be posted directing drivers along Airport Boulevard.
In mid-August, the eastern section of Ellsworth Road will be closed until the end of the month. The posted detour will be along Research Park Drive.
Though the Ellsworth Road closures are expected to end in the beginning of September, the project won’t be completed until mid to late September.
Mandy Grewal, Pittsfield Township supervisor, said the township is pursuing ways to help senior drivers learn how to safely use the new roundabout.
Grewal said the township is planning on public forums and will be looking to partner with driver’s education schools to provide guided training sessions.
“It’s our responsibility to do the best we can to try to alleviate the concerns,” Grewal said. “We’re doing our best to really engage with them and make sure they’re as comfortable as possible.”
The project is being funded through a conglomerate of sources, the bulk of which will be paid for by two federal grants. Costco is contributing $500,000 to the project, while the remainder will be split between the city of Ann Arbor and the Road Commission.
A separate $42,000 part of the project -- which involves stamping concrete on portions of the roundabout to make it more visually appealing -- will be split between the city of Ann Arbor and Pittsfield Township.
View Washtenaw County Road Commission work in a larger map