Proposal for Dover roundabout discussed

DOVER — The City of Dover Safety Advisory and Transportation Committee discussed the possibility of a roundabout for Loockerman and Forest Street during its meeting Monday afternoon.

City manager Scott Koenig said the intent is to better manage the intersection, which will help improve access to business and residential driveways as drivers progress back to Del. 8.

“The intent was to potentially install a traffic circle at the intersection of South Kirkwood Street and Loockerman Street to better manage that intersection,” Mr. Koenig said. “It also includes tying in the Clarence Street extension.”

The plan is still in the early stages, but Mr. Koenig said he hopes the city stays on top of it.

“Century Engineering did some conceptual drawings,” Mr. Koenig said. “This is a project that is in the DelDOT six-year plan.

“We wanted to make sure that it stayed in that plan, especially now that the city has received the Downtown Development District designation.”

Mr. Koenig said that when public workshops were held, the general consensus from residents was positive.

Vic Giangrant, owner of Westside Carwash in Dover, said the idea is great, but had a few concerns about it.

“I think it’s a great plan and awesome but I think we need to be aware of the traffic that the car wash creates on Forest Street,” Mr. Giangrant said.

“We get real busy. “Our traffic pattern is out on the street but it’s on the shoulder. It’s not on Forest Street but on the shoulder where the parking is.”

The committee discussed other alternatives as well.

“I feel the same way,” said committee member James Hutchison. “I like the idea of the roundabout but I’m also interested in protecting the roadway and the width of the roadway so it doesn’t interfere with the operation of the car wash.”

Mr. Koenig said there they will continue to improve the plan.

“There were conceptual drawings,” Mr. Koenig said. “These are the first plans and we would like to improve it any way that we can.

“When we continue to move forward with the plan we will take all these ideas into consideration for the final drawings. We have to bring this up to the public hearing a few times. There’s always room for change.”

Mr. Koenig said the plan is about four or five years out, but believes it should remain a priority for the city.

“The earliest is three years,” Mr. Koenig said. “It’s due to the DelDOT planning process and as we move through the capital plan we would like to keep it as a priority.

“We believe it’s one we should support as one of our higher priorities projects when we give our list to the state. It will enhance the downtown area and it will help us expand the downtown footprint into a few areas where the footprint is undermarketed at this point.”

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