BROWN COUNTY - Right now there is only one multi-lane roundabout in BrownCounty, at the east end of the Claude Allouez bridge in De Pere.But there will soon be more than two dozen multi-lane roundaboutsin the county. And that is not counting the plans for MilitaryAvenue.
"It's just a safer way to move traffic," said Kris Schuller withthe Wisconsin Department of Transportation. Schuller says said theupcoming Highway41 expansion project includes a total of 44 multi-laneroundabouts; 28 of them in Brown County; 16 of them in WinnebagoCounty.
"They're going to be placed at the ramp terminals, the on- andoff-ramps and also at some of the nearby intersections that feedtraffic into the system," Schuller said.
That includes two at Lombardi Avenue and 41; three near MasonStreet and 41, including one at Taylor Street; and five nearShawano Avenue and 41.
"In years to come, they're going to be all over Green Bay," saidalderman Tom Weber, who supports roundabouts. He said opponents ofthe roundabouts on Military Avenue will still have to deal withplenty of roundabouts.
"If you won't go though a roundabout you may not get to MilitaryAvenue. It's going to be a lot of roundabouts," Weber said.
While the plan for roundabouts on Military Avenue is expected tochange and the debate will continue, the Highway 41 project and itsroundabouts is pretty much a done deal.
"That was basically pushed down our throats. We didn't have muchsay about that," said Brown County Supv. Pat Evans. He does notsupport roundabouts on Military Avenue. Evans said the two projectscan not really be compared.
"People understand that there's going to be all sort ofroundabouts on 41 but that doesn't mean they want them on MilitaryAvenue," Evans said.
One thing both sides agree on is that the work on MilitaryAvenue should be completed before the 41 project begins. That isstill two or three years away.
A portion of the Highway 41 project in Winnebago County willstart later this year. The DOT is planning a major public relationscampaign once the 41 project gets started. Its goal will be toeducate the public on how to navigate the multi-laneroundabouts.
Former Green Bay schools superintendent Gregory Maass is the new CEO/President of the Brown County United Way.
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The crash scene is clear. Both lanes of I-43 in this area are back open.
Many roads throughout Northeast Wisconsin are snow covered and slippery.