Roundabouts Making La Quinta Go Round

Martín Di Felice

La Quinta, CA

Roundabouts make the world go round, or at least the planners in the City of La Quinta sure hope so, they are replacing five stoplight intersections with them. 

The city’s engineer, Bryan McKinney said they will redesign intersections, "Three along Calle Tampico, and one at Eisenhower Drive and Avenida Montezuma, and the final one is over at Ave. 52 and Avenida Bermudas."

He said the stoplights will be gone, and McKinney said the goal is to create a more inviting community, McKinney said, "With all these different projects, we’re hoping to make this a much more pedestrian, bike, and golf cart friendly atmosphere."

He said the funding for the project will come from a $7.3 million transportation grant from the state. But not all residents are on board. Richard Gray has lived in La Quinta for over 8 years.  He said, "They’re not really that much faster when there’s a lot of traffic, and we have quite a little bit of traffic today, so you can see that the stoplights let traffic flow."

Instead, Gray said he sees more pressing issues around the city, such as a lack of grocery stores in Old Town. 

He said, "More than anything else at the present time is trying to help businesses grow in this city, because we have too many closed-up buildings."

But McKinney said they want to design a solution, around it. 

"We are hoping to draw in more people to do that, visit more our lovely shops down there in the village area," McKinney said. "And this is going to create an atmosphere that will allow them to do that safely."

McKinney said they are scheduled to begin construction by May of next year, and he said to expect about 14 months of road-work.