By ANYSSA BOHANAN
CENTRAL OREGON DAILY NEWS
Try going through the Bond/Reed Market/Brookswood roundabout at any point in the day, and you’ll find plenty of traffic.
The testing of traffic signals at the roundabout at the beginning of March showed mixed results.
“We found that it was beneficial during what we consider the morning rush hour, but that it wasn’t very beneficial in the PM,” said Ryan Oster, Engineering Director with the City of Bend.
The testing proved successful enough that they planned to recommend buying the $600,000 testing meters at the roundabout instead of spending $4 million to $5 million to add additional lanes to the area.
But now, three months after completing the $30,000 test, Oster says COVID and budget cuts within the city of Bend have placed that recommendation on hold.
“Really, we don’t know what the traffic patterns are going to be six months or a year from now and there’s lot of interesting developments in society right now with telecommuting, and we also have a big high school that’s planning on opening in the fall of 2021,” said Oster. “There’s just a lot of variables that it wasn’t a good choice today to go and spend money on that.”
Oster says that though their current plans have been put on hold, they’re looking to also make future recommendations for other busy roundabouts in the city.
“This intersection along with a handful of others in town, we’re just getting to the point where it’s hard to expand them any bigger than they already are,” said Oster. “We want to try and accommodate it in the existing footprint as best we can.”
Oster says they’ll do another bout of testing in about a year and present recommendations to the city then.