ODOT, City of Toledo team up to make roundabout safer

TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - For drivers, the roundabout at Detroit, Berdan and Cherry is two lanes of confusion. Add speeding into the mix, and it's the perfect recipe for lots of accidents.

"People were just blowing through it, and unfortunately, with the way it was geometrically designed, people could go that fast," Rebecca Dangelo said, Public Information Officer for ODOT District 2. "With 244 accidents in the first three years of this being operational, it definitely raised some red flags."

Earlier this year, the Dewine Administration compiled a list of Ohio's 150 most dangerous intersections. The roundabout at Detroit, Berdan and Cherry is within the top 50. Thanks in part to the gas tax increase, the state now has safety funding available to look at some of these intersections. ODOT has partnered with the City of Toledo to make the roundabout safer for everyone.

"What we're looking at right now is changing it from a two lane roundabout all the way around, so a two-by-two, to a two-by-one," Dangelo said. "It will have two lanes on a couple of the legs and one lane on the other leg."

They're also looking at making it so the outside lane only goes straight, and the inside lane gets to then turn, safely exiting at the next leg.

Additionally, ODOT wants to install a right turn lane from southbound Detroit to Berdan that will have a median, bypassing the roundabout all together. Dangelo said that's where they see the most traffic.

They plan to curve the roundabout even more, making it harder for drivers to speed through it.

"If you're heading north, we're going to kind of curve that out a little," Dangelo said. "Right now, it's pretty straight, so in that leg specifically, we're seeing pretty high speeds for roundabouts."

The entire project is expected to cost 1.5 million dollars and will be funded by the State of Ohio.

Construction is set to get underway sometime in 2022.