Roundabout planned for Hoke/Wenger intersection


CLAYTON — During a recent workshop session members of Clayton city council heard a presentation by Mike Murray of Arcadis Design and Engineering regarding a traffic mitigation plan for the intersection of Hoke and Wenger roads.

According to City Manager Amanda Zimmerlin, the city had looked at both a stop light and a roundabout for that intersection.

“The engineers up at ODOT recommended the roundabout, so that is what we moved forward with,” Zimmerlin stated before turning the discussion over to Murray, who made a slide presentation about the project.

Murray told council that Stage II plans and final right-of-way plans have been submitted for approval with the next step involving right-of-way acquisition, which is currently a request for proposals to get an ODOT qualified firm to do that work.

Stage III plans are close to being finalized with one last round of approvals set to be obtained by June 1. The final engineering packet will be due for submission to ODOT by Oct. 1, 2025.

“Meanwhile, somewhere between May 1 and October the right-of-way team will come onboard to start their process,” Murray said. “It is more than a year planned for right-of-way acquisition.”

Murray stated that right-of-way acquisition activities are scheduled to be completed by the end of 2025 with the project ready for bid by early 2026.

Arcadis conducted a preliminary engineering study 18 months ago to consider the options of either a stop light or roundabout. The roundabout option scored better with ODOT.

The project would involve the portion of Hoke Road starting at Smith Drive directly across from the Walmart entrance and would extend about 300 feet north of the Wenger Road intersection. There would also be connecting tie-ins on Wenger to the west and east of the intersection.

The roundabout would be one lane measuring 12 feet wide with a splitter island with either a clockwise or counter clockwise flow from all four approaches.

Part of the project includes a multi-use trail on one side with sidewalk on the other side.

“Part of the grant application was shared use path and part was sidewalk, which was part of obtaining federal funds,” Murray said. “We worked with ODOT quite a bit to keep the footprint as tight as we could.”

The shared use path and sidewalk were key to obtaining funding for the project, which was obtained for congestion mitigation and safety improvements.

“Safety is how we ended up with the roundabout instead of the traffic light,” Murray said. He pointed out that roundabouts reduce the severity of traffic accidents. It was sized to accommodate farm equipment, school buses, and semi traffic due to its proximity to Interstate 70.

The next 12 to 16 months will involve negotiations with property owners to set a fair price to obtain land to accommodate construction of the roundabout.

Members of council were concerned with how much land would be taken from the homeowners at the northwest corner of the intersection. Their property was already impacted by the project that brought water to the Northmont Campus more than 20 years ago.

“Either way that will be very close to that house,” Mayor Mike Stevens noted.

Landscaping and decorative street lighting for the project have yet to be finalized. Councilman Greg Merkle asked if property owners impacted by the project would have an opportunity to provide input as far as street lighting and landscaping or sidewalks involved in the project.

“I don’t think that there are any rules with ODOT that says there has to be community involvement, but I think once we have a slate of items that are available to us that are within those guardrails, we would like to bring those back to council to take a look and see what you wanted to do,” Zimmerlin stated.

Residents will have the opportunity to see the aesthetics of the project and provide feedback as plans for the project reach finalization.

Reach Ron Nunnari at (937) 684-9124 or email [email protected].

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