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Hearing provides straight talk on roundabout

A 2001 study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety shows dramatic decreases in crashes, as well as injury accidents, in 23 U.S. intersections that converted to roundabouts. The study showed that all crashes dropped 39 percent, crashes with injury dropped 76 percent and serious or fatal crashes dropped 89 percent.

"The great thing about roundabouts is the slowing of speeds," said Pangburn.

He also said there was a 45 percent reduction in pedestrian accidents.

Many attendees were concerned with the length of time it would take to complete the intersection project, and the inconvenience it would be while being built.

"It seems like they're going to be taking a lot of time to study these alternatives -- almost as much as the construction itself," said resident Dave Keough, who attended the meeting.

He said he hopes the county analyzes the alternatives quickly and makes a decision.

If construction was to commence, many want to be sure the local residents are not left in the dark.

"We don't have the connectivity along here, but that's something we will need to work on," said Liesse Mohr, who lives on Gipp Road in Guilderland and helped organize the public meeting.

She said she hopes a telephone tree or e-mail list could be started to help keep people in communication about traffic and construction updates.

A detailed design of the roundabout is expected to be finished by the end of winter this year. If all the designs are approved, then construction is scheduled to begin in the spring of 2009 and to be completed by the end of the fall in 2010.

"We're trying to be honest. This is going to be a huge disruption for two years," Franchini said.

Local businesses would also have to deal with the disruption Pangburn pointed out, but he emphasized the importance of not forgetting them if construction was to commence.

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