Officials in Binghamton are trying to quiet concerns over the newly built roundabout. The width of the roundabout has some worrying whether or not truckers can easily use it, but as our Elyse Mickalonis tells us, city officials said it was built to handle tractor trailers and other large vehicles.
BINGHAMTON, N.Y. -- It is part of the $2.7 million Court Street Gateway Project.
“This is a work in progress, but Binghamton is on its way back and this is another feature of all the progress we’re making,” said Matt Ryan, Binghamton Mayor.
The city announced plans to begin construction on the project in March. The plan has been in the works since 2005, and the roundabout was ready for traffic in August.
“Roundabouts calm traffic down, they have less conflict points, that is less accidents,” said Cyndi Paddick, BMTS Director.
Now the roundabout has some people worrying about whether or not tractor trailers can fit the curve, but officials said there is nothing to worry about.
“When it was designed by the engineers they do designs so it can accommodate buses tractor trailers, fire trucks, all of those,” explained Paddick.
Officials said trucks shouldn’t have any trouble using the roundabout which is because of something called a truck apron, located on the inside of the circle.
“When you look at the pavement, it doesn’t seem like it’s wide enough, but the inside of it that kind of looks like a sidewalk is a truck apron,” said Paddick. “It’s designed so the wheels can go up and around there if the vehicle needs to. The City of Binghamton has tried it out with fire trucks and it was fine.”
The city also believes the roundabout will decrease pollution and increase downtown tourism.
“Now you can see the beautiful architecture, all the lights are gone, it slows it down for pedestrians, it’s a calming effect and you never have cars sitting there polluting the environment for minutes at a time,” said Ryan.
Paddick said the roundabout still has a way to go before it is 100 percent complete, but that all finishing touches should be done before winter.