Silt, Rifle learning to live with their roundabouts
RIFLE, Colorado While drivers are getting used to Rifle, Colorados newly opened roundabouts, traffic configurations of a roundabout in Silt at Ninth Street and Main will be switched beginning this afternoon.One of the biggest problems weve had at our roundabouts is people driving in the wrong lane, said Gary Osier, Rifles public relations roundabout coordinator. Weve had lots of near misses. People arent driving in the lane theyre supposed to, and theyre not using their blinkers.Osier stressed that drivers traveling from the north part of the city and heading south to get onto the Interstate 70 on-ramp heading east toward Glenwood Springs, need to stay on the inside lane of the roundabout. Otherwise, they attempt to get into the right lane to get on the ramp, only to find that there is a vehicle driving next to them.Weve had a lot of close calls, Osier said.The roundabouts officially opened in September after more than six months of construction. A ribbon-cutting ceremony is scheduled at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 28, in the grassy area on south Seventh Street near the Kum & Go convenience store.Mayor Keith Lambert, along with representatives from the Department of Local Affairs and the Colorado Department of Transportation, which contributed funding to the project, are expected to attend. In Silt, Martinez Western Constructors will begin the last phase of construction of the roundabout and will be switching traffic configurations two different times.From Oct. 17-20, the configuration will allow traffic to travel the roundabout with all roadways and business accesses open.As of Oct. 20, the configuration will restrict access to I-70 or south Silt through the roundabout construction.Access to Silt from I-70 and south Silt will be allowed and will be one lane only, said Tim Laudick, project manager for Western Martinez. All other roadways in the roundabout construction will be open. All business access will be open. This traffic configuration is anticipated to be in place for a minimum of 10 days.The configurations are necessary while the roadway platforms are being built for the existing access and egress of I-70 in the south half of the project. However, access to businesses will remain open.For more information about the Silt and Rifle roundabouts, contact Tim Laudick at 319-5380 or Martinez Western Constructors at 625-3401.
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