A project to improve traffic flow at a southern Dothan intersection could gain the first of two necessary approvals Tuesday at the Houston County Commission meeting.
The commission will consider an agreement with the City of Dothan regarding the installation of a roundabout at the intersection of Taylor Road and South Park Avenue. The Dothan City Commission discussed the project Tuesday during an administrative meeting and could consider approving its side of the deal June 4.
An increase in traffic flow in recent years has caused officials to consider changes to the junction, which is currently mediated with stop signs on each leg. The city opened James Oates Park less than a mile from the intersection in 2017, and closed a popular cut-through, Moore Road, in 2018 due to safety and flooding concerns.
Those changes – combined with major subdivision growth inside and outside Dothan’s city limits on the south side – have dramatically increased the traffic flow in the area.
“This intersection, because of the growth in the area and certainly the added impact of the park, became overwhelmed,” Houston County Commission Chairman Mark Culver said Thursday. “We looked at traffic lights. We looked at the roundabout. Both staffs agree from a flow perspective, from a safety perspective and from a cost perspective, the roundabout was the best solution.”
“There’s always been an issue northbound with people coming from the county to work,” added Charles Metzger, Dothan Public Works director. “Southbound has been worse than we probably thought (following the Moore Road project), but the accidents were worse. The majority of traffic is north and south definitely.”
Even though the intersection is in the Dothan city limits, Houston County maintains both roads in the area. City and county officials have agreed to split the cost of major items and divvy up the responsibilities related to construction and maintenance.
Highlights of the agreement include the following:
>> The governments will split the cost of asphalt.
>> The county will purchase the concrete and storm drainage materials for the islands, while the city will install the needed islands.
>> The county will purchase all necessary rights-of-way, while the city will handle relocation of its utility lines. The county will coordinate the relocation of other utility lines as needed.
>> The city will handle landscaping at the roundabout, while the county will maintain the roadway structures.
Culver said Thursday the agreement highlights the value of partnerships between the city and county.
“I think it helps both of our tax dollars going forward,” he said.
Culver estimated the project’s total cost will be just shy of $1 million.