Fountain Mesa Road Roundabout Improves Neighborhood Safety
- Local Governments
- Public Sector
- Government Services
- Innovative Geometry
- Local Government Engineering
- Traffic + Safety
- Fountain, Colorado
Challenge: Fountain, Colorado, located in El Paso County, has seen an explosion in population and business growth, bringing increased traffic to the area. Traffic studies and analysis of accident history within the corridor supported the need for improvements at the intersection of Fountain Mesa Road and Caballero/Fortman Avenue.
Solution: HR Green was the Project Manager and Designer for installing the roundabout at the intersection. It offered an alternative to manage traffic congestion better and make it safer by adding signaling for pedestrians and students of the two schools who routinely use this cross-street multiple times a day. It also acts as a traffic calming device for the area which has been subject to vehicles traveling at excessive speeds.
El Paso County Public Works considered multiple options to address traffic and safety issues at the intersection. Studies showed that the roundabout option would reduce speed, the number of conflict points (locations in intersections where vehicles merge, diverge, or cross), and the number of accidents. A detailed access and safety analysis was conducted to determine the geometric configuration.
This intersection was deemed one of the busiest utility intersections in the area. It is home to sanitary sewer, storm sewer, water lines, electrical, and multiple fiber optic/communication lines. HR Green worked closely with the utility owners, SUE consultant, El Paso County, and the City of Fountain to determine the most feasible solution with the lowest impact on the surrounding residents.
Major drainage issues existed at the intersection, causing stormwater system surcharges that flooded properties and flowed into low-point sanitary manholes, eventually causing basement flooding. HR Green regraded the intersection, upsized the storm sewer capacity, and eliminated flooding and sewer surcharge issues for the surrounding residents.
Land acquisition and additional right-of-way were required to construct the roundabout and associated utilities. The acquisition included additional land at all four (4) corners of the intersection and along the right-of-way frontage for construction, requiring reconstruction of privacy fences and landscape. Right-of-way plans were prepared per CDOT standards.
Benefit: The success of the Fountain Mesa Road roundabout is attributed to the coordination and collaboration between jurisdictions, citizens, districts, and the contractor to successfully install a roundabout in a developed residential neighborhood. Communication and public buy-in were critical factors in improving this intersection’s safety and functionality. By working with all public agencies and general public, not only were the transportation improvements implemented, but intersection flooding and improvements to the utility infrastructure were addressed to improve reliability for the surrounding neighborhoods. The three ultimate goals for the project were accomplished – create a safe passage for pedestrians/students to cross the intersection, improve traffic congestion during peak hours, and provide traffic calming.