ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – An overdue roundabout at a busy St. Augustine intersection has some drivers frustrated about how long it's taken to finish the project.
“It’s not complete," said John Regan, St. Augustine city manager. “The current traffic flow that’s getting close to the final, has definitely reduced the congestion for the Vilano Causeway.”
It’s been a hot spot for traffic and a hot topic of discussion: the May Street and San Marco Avenue intersection in Saint Augustine.
“I would just say, we all need to bear with DOT (Department of Transportation) until they get this work done. When it comes to fruition, I think people will think it will perform well,” Regan said.
The Florida Department of Transportation and the City of St. Augustine have been working on improving the intersection since 2017. The completion date for the project has been pushed back several times.
“It needs to be completed, and the lights need to be tuned and synchronized. There’s still work to be done.” Regan added.
According to FDOT, the goal is to increase safety and help the flow of traffic by adding dedicated turn lanes, sidewalks, shared bike lanes, synchronized traffic signals and a high-intensity activated crosswalk.
Regan said, “It makes a big difference for Vilano, but because it is not finished and the lights aren’t tuned ... it’s a little confusing.”
Elise Larsen lives in St. Augustine and travels through the intersection often. “I wonder why it’s just not a (regular) roundabout. I am willing to postpone judgment until it’s done," Larson said.”They are still working on it. So, I don’t want to say it’s not working. I have not been stopped on the Vilano Bridge since it’s been there. It seems like it may work.”
Some people have complained that vehicles carrying boats on trailers don't fit in the roundabout.
"We have communicated that to DOT. The DOT told us, it’s not complete, so barrels (are) blocking the turn radiuses, but when it’s done, the design will make towing boat trailers more comfortable,” Regan said.
The $9.5 million project, which includes drainage work, is set to be completed late this year or in early 2020.