A roundabout will be installed at the intersection of Normandy and Greenfield roads in a project involving Royal Oak, Beverly Hills and the Road Commission for Oakland County.

A roundabout will be installed at the intersection of Normandy and Greenfield roads in a project involving Royal Oak, Beverly Hills and the Road Commission for Oakland County.

Photo by Patricia O’Blenes

Construction on roundabout in Royal Oak, Beverly Hills slated to start spring 2023

By: Mike Koury | Royal Oak Review | Published October 4, 2022


ROYAL OAK — An intersection at the border of Royal Oak and Beverly Hills will be turned into a roundabout next year.

The intersection at Normandy and Greenfield roads will become a roundabout, with construction scheduled to begin in April. The project will be done in conjunction with Beverly Hills and the Road Commission for Oakland County.

Road Commission Public Information Officer Craig Bryson stated that Royal Oak and Beverly Hills have wanted to do something at the intersection for a long time, as both have been concerned that traffic moves too quickly in the area. While the intersection doesn’t meet the requirements for a traffic signal, it was a candidate for a roundabout.

“Roundabouts will help with the traffic flow, they’ll slow traffic down because part of the design of a roundabout is it forces cars to slow down as they enter the roundabout,” he said. “So rather than a straight shot where they’re just cruising right through, they have to slow down, go through the roundabout and then go on their way.

“Because traffic in these roundabouts allow for the free flow of traffic in all directions at all times, it will reduce the wait time for side street traffic to pull out onto Greenfield, which has been a concern; it’ll be easier for pedestrians to maneuver through the area because with a roundabout, pedestrians only have to cross one direction of traffic at a time,” he said.

The design of roundabouts also lessens the potential for serious crashes to occur.

“It virtually eliminates the potential for head-on collisions and, you know, broadside collisions — somebody turning left and getting T-boned,” Bryson said.

Royal Oak City Engineer Holly Donoghue said that there are no traffic signals for the whole mile stretch between 13 Mile and 14 Mile roads, and the city has gotten complaints about people speeding regularly on that stretch of Greenfield, which is a residential area.

“A roundabout was kind of the concept we finally got to, to help potentially slow down traffic, make it a safer roadway for all users, and hopefully it’ll be an attractive project when we’re done with it,” she said.

Donoghue said the city has been getting feedback from residents on project concerns, which has included the worry that drivers would be using Beverly Court, the circular road surrounding the intersection, too much during construction.

“We’re worried that people are going to start cutting through there to avoid the roundabout,” she said. “So in that case, we asked (RCOC), ‘Hey, can you close off this road? The residents are in favor of it.’ So that’s going to be part of the project now.”

With an expected 2023 spring start date, construction is scheduled to be completed in the fall. The cost of the project, Bryson said, is an estimated $1.7 million. Royal Oak will cover 25% of the project costs.

Along with the creation of the roundabout, which was described by Bryson as a “one lane compact roundabout,” about 1/5 of a mile of both Greenfield and Normandy in the immediate vicinity of the intersection will be reconstructed. The intersection will be closed during construction.

“It’ll include the placement of new curbs and new gutters in the approaches to the roundabout, some minor drainage improvements in the area, as well as new concrete sidewalks along both Greenfield and Normandy approaching the roundabout,” he said.

For those looking for more information on the project, a public meeting will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 18, at the Royal Oak Senior Center, 3500 Marais Ave. The meeting will feature a presentation and attendees can look over the plans and ask questions about the project.