I attended the Klatt Road & Johns Road Intersection Improvements Open House at Oceanview Elementary School on the evening of June 6th along with twenty or so other attendees. The event was hosted by Sean Holland, the state DOT & PF Project Manager, along with several other department personnel. Bottom line: After examining the situation, the DOT is recommending the construction of a roundabout as the preferred and safest alternative for this intersection. The alternatives examined were:
A: No changes to the current two way stop sign intersection.
B. Two way stop sign intersection with added turn lanes.
C. Four way stop sign intersection.
D. Traffic signal intersection.
The purpose of the Open House last week was to present intersection alternatives to the public along with justification for the roundabout recommendation. This was also the opportunity for residents who use the intersection on a daily basis to give their input either verbally and/or in writing on the supplied forms. The presentation and subsequent feedback from attendees took close to an hour.
The handout below gives additional information as to the pros and cons of the various alternatives. At this point, it looks like we’re moving toward a roundabout intersection. I suspect Johns/Klatt is a little more challenging than the average intersection to convert to a roundabout, given the northern ground slope and space limitations. However, after listening to the Open House presentation, which included some analysis of various existing roundabouts around town, it sounds doable. The designers don’t want it to be a smaller, higher speed roundabout, such as Dowling and the Seward Hwy. The intent is to have some drivable area in the perimeter core area for westbound large commercial vehicles, but also have a central raised area to prevent higher speed cut-through traffic. The preliminary design also include crosswalks and between lane pedestrian standby areas, so pedestrians won’t have to necessarily cross both lanes at the same time if traffic is heavier.
Construction will not take place this year. There are still a number of hurdles to complete, although design and construction funding is in place. Actual road work could start as early as next year or the year after. We’ll know more as time marches on. Regardless, the Johns Road reconstruction project from Klatt Road to High View Drive will be completed before work begins on this intersection project.