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Residents and officials talk, react to roundabout
by Bobby Tedder
btedder@neighbornewspapers.com
September 25, 2012 07:08 PM | 1157 views | 0 0 comments | 21 21 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A proposed municipal plan to convert the intersection of Womack Road and Vermack Road into a roundabout is generating a significant amount of interest from residents.

That was evident during last week’s well-attended initial public meeting. Those on hand were privy to one-on-one dialogue with city of Dunwoody officials, mock-ups of what the changes would look like and other informative materials.

Some expressed their support of the plan; others their misgivings.

Bill Grossman, president of the Dunwoody Homeowners Association, has not been swayed in either direction thus far.

“My organization traditionally supports intersection improvements on two-lane roads,” said Grossman. “But, at this point we haven’t made a decision one way or the other. We do support the process the city’s going through for these public meetings, though … and there will be no shortage of differing opinions.”

Implementation of the roundabout is in accordance with Dunwoody’s Comprehensive Transportation Plan. The project’s primary objectives include achieving efficient traffic flow and improving safety for vehicles and pedestrians as well as adding sidewalks and bicycle accommodations, according to a report released by the city.

Joe Seconder, used to seeing roundabouts while living in Europe, supports installation of one at Womack and Vermack roads.

“Traffic just flows so elegantly,” Seconder said. “It’s kind of interesting — it slows traffic, but keeps it going … you wouldn’t have to come to a complete stop. And, aesthetically, it’s a sense of place,” he added. “It’s leading edge; it’s cool … and safer for pedestrians, just makes sense all around.”

Seconder used Roswell’s year-old roundabout as a point of reference regarding the positive future implications of Dunwoody’s version of it.

Longtime Dunwoody resident Ronald Gurin, who has driven the Roswell roundabout, said it seems “to not be too bad” but is not applicable to traffic circumstances here.

“I don’t particularly care for the [Dunwoody] roundabout,” said Gurin. “That’s such a high volume intersection … I can’t imagine with the traffic we have here in the morning and afternoon not having some people not paying attention when they pull around.”

City officials note the alternatives to installing the roundabout are less than desirable.

Leaving the intersection as is would lead to continued increase in congestion. The other option, installing a traffic signal with turn lanes, would have more impact on adjacent properties, be more costly and less safe, according to the aforementioned report.
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