GODFREY - Several members of the Godfrey Village Board of Trustees discussed the concerns they had about the Godfrey roundabout project being done by the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) at their meeting on Tuesday night.
The general consensus amongst the board members is that while they agree some measure needs to be taken to address traffic in the area, they don’t feel the project’s current design is right for Godfrey and that IDOT has not provided adequate traffic solutions during the construction phase.
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“Last night, there was a meeting with IDOT about the roundabout … whether you’re for it or against it, I think Godfrey has been thrown a big problem by IDOT,” Trustee Jeff Weber said. “IDOT’s going to close that section for - I talked to four different people from IDOT, one of them said it’ll take a year, one said a year and a half, one said two years, and one said, ‘I hope we can get it done in three years’ - so obviously, they don’t really know what they’re talking about.
“The problem they’ve thrown us is, if you live anyplace west of Pierce [Lane], how are you going to get there? I asked that last night and the answer from three of them was, ‘Well, go down and take the River Road to Clifton Terrace and then come back,’ and I said, ‘What if a firetruck or an ambulance has to get there, isn’t that a long way to go?’ [they said] ‘Uh, well, yeah.’”
Weber also pointed out later in the meeting that taking the River Road is not a viable option whenever it’s flooded, something IDOT apparently failed to take into consideration.
Given the volume of cars that regularly drive through the area construction is taking place, Weber said anywhere from 8,000-10,000 cars per day might try rerouting through D’Adrian, an unsustainable amount of traffic for the area. He suggested a study be done to monitor the road conditions in the area and should they deteriorate due to increased traffic, hold IDOT accountable for that.
Mayor Mike McCormick announced he will attend a WebX meeting next Monday with IDOT staff and Rep. C.D. Davidsmeyer to “revisit” the design and traffic solutions regarding the roundabout project.
“I was on the phone this morning with IDOT [and] State Rep. Amy Elik, and they made a commitment to re-look at that, and we’re going to have a WebX meeting with Amy Elik, C.D. Davidsmeyer, Richard [Beran] and I, and the IDOT staff next Monday,” McCormick said. “We will know where we really stand next Monday after that meeting. Personally, I was kind of thrown a curveball because I was under the impression that the traffic would always go through.”
“I think we all were,” Weber responded.
“Absolutely,” Trustee Virginia Woulfe-Beile added. “I support the idea of improving those intersections with roundabouts, but they do not offer good solutions for the construction phase and it’s just not going to work. There’s going to be public safety issues, traffic in residential neighborhoods - so yeah, I just think that design needs to be revisited before we move forward with this.”
Trustee Sarah Wittman said that the concerns she’s been hearing from residents largely match the concerns raised by the other trustees.
“What I’ve heard from residents is, ‘Has the problem of traffic been large enough to address it and fix it in this manner - interrupting lifestyles for three to four years on both the residents of D’Adrian and those people driving - and is this the best solution?’” she said. “Once IDOT now is involved and our representatives are helping get the residents involved - and your meeting coming up Monday - at least the residents know we are taking action to try and support their needs.”
“There are a lot of residents that understood there’s a problem there, and we’re in favor of a solution, but not this solution,” Woulfe-Beile said. “I’ll be really interested to hear what happens at your meeting.”
SEE VIDEO FROM PREVIOUS MEETING: