Almond Road and Dada Drive Intersection Improvements

As part of the planned $11.7 million capital campaign for summer of 2018, the Village of Gurnee will be resurfacing Almond Road to help improve the pavement quality between Grand Avenue and Washington Street. During this resurfacing project, the Engineering Division is also looking to improve traffic flow at the Almond Road and Dada Drive intersection. After analyzing the intersection, Staff Engineers and consultants agree that converting the intersection from a four-way stop to a mini-roundabout would greatly increase traffic flow and improve the safety of the intersection.

Almond Road and Dada Drive Intersection FAQ

  1. What is a mini-roundabout?
  2. A mini-roundabout is similar to a traditional roundabout, but it has a traversable central island that allows larger vehicles, such as school buses, to safely go over the island instead of around it.

    The below images shows a common design standard for a mini-roundabout:

    Mini Roundabout
  3. Why a mini-roundabout?
  4. The benefit of a mini-roundabout is that it will allow traffic to safely flow without coming to a complete stop, as is the case with a four-way stop. Additionally, a mini-roundabout will fit in the current space of the intersection and will not require expanding the footprint or acquisition of additional right-of-way. Unlike a traditional traffic circle or larger roundabout, the mini-roundabout has the traversable center that will allow buses and other large vehicles to go over the center rather than around it.

    The Federal Highway Administration has put together a helpful video on the many benefits of a mini-roundabout: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=94h1TCK-yNs

  5. What will the traffic impact be during the construction of this mini-roundabout?
  6. The intersection is expected to be fully closed and detoured for approximately one month to allow crews to quickly remove the old intersection and install the new roundabout.

    The goal of this project is to focus operations during the times school is not in session to avoid conflicts with bus routes. The Village is working with the local school districts for the coordination of this project.

  7. Why was this not done when the water mains were installed last year?
  8. The Central Lake County Joint Action Water Agency installed water mains along Almond Road in 2016/2017 to connect the water system to new agencies such as Grandwood Park and Lindenhurst. This was a planned construction project that will benefit Gurnee residents with better water reliability and long-term capital cost sharing with these new agencies, which will keep water rates down as the infrastructure ages. Village Engineering has worked strategically with CLCJAWA contractors to keep Almond Road open and accessible for much of the construction. Having multiple crews performing different operations in the same work space would not have been possible without extended road closures—something this strategic timing of projects aims to avoid.

  9. Still unsure about a mini-roundabout?
  10. Here are a few more sources of information on these installations and their success in improving intersections:

  11. How will this impact pedestrians?
  12. One of the considerations for recommending the mini-roundabout was the heavy pedestrian use in the area. The pedestrian crossing will be reduced from crossing 3 lanes of traffic currently to crossing one lane of traffic on to a splitter island, and then crossing a 2nd lane on a cross walk. Additionally, there will be no obstructing center island so a vehicle coming from the far side of the direction will have an unimpeded view of the intersection and any pedestrian within. Studies have found this is a safer pedestrian crossing than major 4-way stop intersections.
     
    You can learn more about the findings from the Federal Highway Administration's study on mini-roundabouts, and the safety improvements they can provide to residents: https://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/intersection/innovative/roundabouts/fhwasa10007/

    Sample design of the pedestrian crossing below: 

    f6

Questions or comments regarding this proposed project? Reach out to us via our Comments section to express your opinion.