Cumberland Circle reconstruction in Des Plaines beginning soon

  • The Cumberland Circle in Des Plaines is getting a makeover, with construction scheduled to start next week.

      The Cumberland Circle in Des Plaines is getting a makeover, with construction scheduled to start next week. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • A preliminary rendering shows plans for improving Cumberland Circle at the intersection of Golf and Wolf roads in Des Plaines.

    A preliminary rendering shows plans for improving Cumberland Circle at the intersection of Golf and Wolf roads in Des Plaines. Courtesy of the Illinois Department of Transportation

  • Traffic moves around the Cumberland Circle in Des Plaines, which is getting a makeover. Construction is scheduled to start next week.

      Traffic moves around the Cumberland Circle in Des Plaines, which is getting a makeover. Construction is scheduled to start next week. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Traffic moves around the Cumberland Circle in Des Plaines. The intersection is getting a makeover, with construction scheduled to start next week.

      Traffic moves around the Cumberland Circle in Des Plaines. The intersection is getting a makeover, with construction scheduled to start next week. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Des Plaines traffic circle

    Graphic: Des Plaines traffic circle (click image to open)

 
 
Updated 3/30/2018 4:45 PM

Cumberland Circle in Des Plaines, known for causing traffic problems for drivers navigating the Northwest suburbs, will finally be getting a makeover.

A $4.6 million project to upgrade the traffic circle at the intersection of Golf and Wolf roads is expected to start Tuesday, according to the Illinois Department of Transportation. The improvements have been years in the making.

 

"I think it's something that's needed and overdue," said Alderman Dick Sayad, who recalling having some close calls while driving through the traffic circle. "That's the No. 1 place for accidents in Des Plaines."

According to city statistics, 421 accidents occurred in the traffic circle between 2005 and 2011. Most of the crashes were the results of drivers turning into other vehicles, rear ending or sideswiping each other. Despite the high number of crashes, only about 10 percent resulted in injuries.

The project will reconstruct the existing traffic circle into a modern roundabout to increase safety and mobility, officials said.

The roundabout will have clearly defined lanes, improved entry angles, splitter islands to deflect vehicles into proper lanes and well-marked pedestrian crossings set back from the circle. It will include truck aprons so that long vehicles won't strike curbs as they turn. It will also include lighting and drainage work.

Traffic will be reduced to one lane during construction. Transportation officials said drivers should expect delays and allow extra time for trips through the area. The project is expected to be finished by fall 2019, officials said.

The city is paying for about $672,000 of the project. About $3.1 million is from federal funding and about $774,000 is from the state.

The contractor is Elgin-based Martam Construction.

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