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Roundabout proposed by carousel in St. Augustine

5:50 PM, Jun 18, 2013   |    comments
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ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- People just love the carousel in St. Augustine, but very few people are wild about the intersection it sits next to.

Traffic often backs up at the intersection of May Street and San Marco Avenue.

Talise Harrington runs the carousel, and she's seen people lose their tempers at the intersection.

"It gets pretty snarled and ugly," she said. 

Mark Knight is the City of St. Augustine's Planning and Building Director. "That has always had traffic problems because of the offset intersection on San Marco and the double light system," he said.

A recent traffic study of St. Augustine's entry corridors showed this intersection needs help and suggested a roundabout by there.

The idea is to keep traffic flowing, to alleviate congestion and to reduce the number of crashes there.

The City of St. Augustine and St. Johns County are telling the Florida Department of Transportation they would like an extensive study regarding a roundabout at May and San Marco. It's one of their road construction priorities.

The proposed roundabout is getting mixed reviews from those in the community.

Jeffrey Warring drives through the intersection to go to work. "I don't like the roundabout. I think it'll make traffic more congested, especially with all the trolley trams."

Sonja Delong doesn't like the idea either. "I'm wondering where they would put a roundabout because they seem big."

Knight said, "They (planners) believe they can get a roundabout in there with one small corner clip of the southwest corner of private property. Basically, the design would fit into the existing right of way."

That means that Davenport Park and the carousel would not be touched.

As for Harrington, who keeps the carousel spinning, said, "It might help! The whole traffic situation is pretty tangled up already, so I don't see how it could be any worse!"

First Coast News

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