Residents respond to roundabout in south Columbia

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COLUMBIA — A public hearing for the construction of a roundabout for the intersection of Chapel Hill Road and Fairview Road is scheduled for Monday at Columbia’s City Council meeting. 

Brenda Chapman has lived on the corner of the Chapel Hill Road and Fairview Road intersection for the past five years. She said she is against changing the intersection to a roundabout.

“There ain’t been one wreck here since I moved in," Chapman said. "You might occasionally hear someone breaking hard but I don’t think it’s necessary even with five o’clock traffic being what it is.”

According to City of Columbia documents, the proposed roundabout would be a 110 ft.-inscribed circle, which would accommodate commercial vehicles and school buses. The design would also include the addition of sidewalk space and additional street lights.

Bob Borst, a property owner in the Chapel Hill subdivision, said it is common for large vehicles to not be able to use the roundabout properly.

“You will see school buses drive through the center," Borst said. "You will see trucks pulling long trailers not be able to make that tight of a turn so they drive right over it and not necessarily slow down to much.”

If passed, the roundabout will cost $600,000. The funding would be provided by a .25 percent sales tax, which was approved by voters in 2015.

Steve Stronge, a property owner on Fairview Road, said he believes that the roundabout is an unnecessary expansion.

“Our city is already short on money,” said Stronge. "I just think this is a big waste. I have lived next to this intersection and it works just fine. We need to be smarter about how we spend money."

Karen Miller, District I Commissioner of Boone County, wrote a letter to the mayor and council stating she was in favor of the roundabout. You can view the letter above.

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