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Wed January 24, 2007
Traffic Circles Planned for River Road
By Catherine M. Welch
Wilmington, NC – Developers seeking to bump a stretch of River Road are planning to put two traffic circles in River Road.
Developer Newland Communities says it wants to put one River Road traffic circle at Lorraine Drive and another just south of Barnards Creek.
Residents say the pair of one-lane traffic circles will snarl traffic and developers should instead widen the road for future growth.
Newland Community's Jay Smith says the Department of Transportation recommends traffic circles as the safest way to slow down traffic.
The idea would be a traffic circle as a type of traffic calming device, alerts people that there's an intersection, but doesn't stop traffic from flowing, just slows it down.
Developers also say they will build a pedestrian tunnel under River Road for neighboring residents to access the water and public walkways inside the development.
Newland Communities also say it plans on handing over 15 acres of land for public access to the Cape Fear River,Barnards Creek and Motts Creeks.
Public access to the water was a condition set by the New Hanover County planning board.
Developers also plan to wrap a 180-acre golf course around the wetlands lining Barnards Creek.
Resident Melanie Doyle says those plans go against everything she's heard about developing around wetlands.
To have a developer come in and say they're going to build a golf course between two tidal creeks, and right up to the Cape Fear River where we know we have nursery areas, where we know we have sensitive wetlands, just doesn't make a whole lot of sense.
Developers and residents are scheduled to meet again Friday at noon before Newland Communities takes its plans to the New Hanover County Commissioner's meeting February 5th.