Over the next few months, the intersection between Verboort and Purdin Road on Oregon Highway 47 outside of Forest Grove will be under construction while a roundabout is being built.
As someone who commutes to Pacific University and drives through that intersection everyday, I was disappointed to find that I now have to factor an extra five to 10 minutes into my travel time because of traffic caused by the road construction. But that’s not to say that I’m against the roundabout. The dangerous intersection has been the cause of fatal car accidents, including two freshmen women from Pacific that died in a car accident two years ago.
After the accident involving the two Pacific students, the speed limit for the area was reduced from 50 mph to 45 mph and warning signs were posted to instruct drivers to look out and to help them to be more aware oncoming traffic.
Personally, these changes did little to improve the safety of the intersection.
With the amount of “almost accidents” that I’ve witnessed at this intersection, I believe that a greater change like the roundabout was needed. Even though I find myself complaining about traffic because of the construction, I think creating the roundabout was a great decision.nSome people are against the roundabout because of the potential traffic buildup that it may cause at the intersection.
While this may be true, I think that the sacrifice of sitting in some traffic is worth it if it means having a safer intersection and potentially saving lives.