Hodgson Road Reconstruction Design Features

The community engagement process raised several questions about elements of the proposed Hodgson Road road design.

Center left-turn lane


Trail and sidewalk locations


Private property impacts


Roundabouts can have a number of benefits over traffic signals and other intersection types.

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Increased safety

Roundabouts slow down vehicles, which protects pedestrians, bicyclists and drivers and reduces the number and severity of crashes. Studies show roundabouts decrease crashes by 39% and fatal crashes by 89%.

Eleven of the 23 crashes that occurred at the Hodgson Road, Gramsie Road and Rice Street intersection from 2011-2019 were right-angle, left-turn and head-on collisions. Studies show roundabouts reduce these types of crashes.

Navigating a roundabout is easier for pedestrians and bicyclists because oncoming traffic is only from one direction. The design includes pedestrian refuge spaces so pedestrians only need to cross two lanes of traffic per leg of a roundabout – and only one lane at a time. When crossing the intersection using the current traffic signal, pedestrians have to cross up to six lanes of traffic and face potential risks with drivers running red lights or making right turns.

Roundabout safety resources

Improved traffic flow and capacity

More traffic can be accommodated and with less delay at roundabouts than at other intersection designs. Roundabouts increase traffic capacity by 30-50%, and studies have shown that vehicle delays are reduced by 20-30%. Roundabouts can also function in close proximity to each other without creating traffic backups experienced by other intersections.

More than 15,000 vehicles currently use this stretch of Hodgson Road daily, and the road is one of the main north south routes for the area. A large volume of vehicles turn at the Hodgson Road, Gramsie Road and Rice Street intersection. During peak traffic, more than 400 vehicles per hour are turning right to go north on Rice Street (evening peak) and turning left to go south on Rice Street (morning peak). These volumes are expected to rise as the population continues to grow in the area. A roundabout will better hold the growing capacity over the next few decades. 

Lower maintenance costs

Roundabouts cost less to maintain each year and don’t require electricity compared to a traffic signal. The current traffic signal at the Hodgson Road, Gramsie Road and Rice Street intersection was built in 1983 with an intended 30-year lifespan. Replacing the signal system would cost roughly $300,000, which is about the same cost as building a roundabout as part of the reconstruction.

Pedestrian safety

Compared to traditional intersections, roundabouts typically offer the following safety benefits and features for pedestrians:

  • Lower motor vehicle speeds and increased yielding behavior.
  • Fewer conflict points.
  • Higher visibility of pedestrians in the crosswalk.
  • Shorter wait time for pedestrians to cross compared to traffic signals.
  • Lower exposure to vehicles because of the shortened crossing distance.
  • Simpler crossing due to the splitter islands, which provide mid-crossing protection and allow pedestrians to focus on traffic from one direction at a time.
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Watch the video about to learn more about roundabout safety features.

Additional roundabout information from the Minnesota Department of Transportation