A portion of Reynoldsburg-New Albany Road in Jefferson Township is expected to remain closed between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. daily through most of the remainder of February while crews clear trees to prepare for the construction of a traffic roundabout later this year.
The closure is between Clark State Road and Hannah Farms Court.
The Franklin County Engineer's Office plans to build a $2.6 million roundabout at Reynoldsburg-New Albany and Clark State roads beginning in August, said Fritz Crosier, chief deputy of engineering. That work is expected to take about 75 days.
Crosier said the office is installing the roundabout for safety and congestion reasons.
Carla Marable, a spokeswoman for the engineer's office, said traffic backs up at the intersection.
According to the office, about 16,000 vehicles travel that section of Reynoldsburg-New Albany Road daily, with another 7,000 on Clark State Road.
The county engineer plans to build another roundabout at Reynoldsburg-New Albany and Havens roads in 2022, Crosier said.
To his knowledge, Crosier said, the most recent roundabout was completed in 2018 on Smothers Road at Schott and Red Bank roads near Westerville, and the county has others planned for construction in the next few years: Norton Road at Johnson Road in Pleasant Township; Morse Road at Kitzmiller Road at Reynoldsburg-New Albany Road in Jefferson Township; and Morse Road at Babbitt Road in Plain Township.
As part of Gahanna's Hamilton Road Central project that was completed in 2017, two roundabouts were built at Clark State Road and at the Northeast School on Hamilton Road. Both are south of where U.S. Route 62 crosses Hamilton.
Rob Priestas, Gahanna's former director of public service and engineering, previously told ThisWeek the roundabouts are efficient and provide for constant movement of traffic.
"Prior to the roundabout installation, the intersection of Clark State Road and Hamilton Road experienced heavy congestion and backups," he said. "Since the completion of the roundabouts, there is very little delay and congestion experienced at this intersection."
Crosier said roundabouts warrant no specific requirements.
"They're just a good balance of increasing safety and still getting good capacity to the intersection," he said. "They're safer than a traditionally signalized intersection."
Studies have shown roundabouts provide nearly an 80% reduction in injury accidents because the circular layout reduces the likelihood of head-on or broadside collisions, according to franklincountyengineer.org/roundabouts.
ThisWeek staff writer Marla K. Kuhlman contributed to this story.