VDOT News - Bristol
Michelle Earl 276-696-3283
Aug. 1, 2017
Route 610 roundabout at Union High School ready for students
Ribbon cutting ceremony held to celebrate the completion of safety improvements
BRISTOL – Union High School students returning for the upcoming academic year will find more than fresh paint and new books.
Local elected officials, Union High School staff and students, and Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) representatives held a ribbon cutting ceremony August 1 to mark the completion of safety improvements installed this summer along Route 610 (Powell Valley Road).
Included in the safety improvements was the conversion of the four-way intersection without a traffic signal at Route 610 and Shawnee Avenue into a roundabout. The roundabout and new signs, pavement markings and delineators will improve traffic flow and safety around Union High School, Union Middle School and Union Primary School.
Motorists need to remember a few key points when approaching the roundabout.
“All approaching vehicles must yield to traffic already in the circle” said Joseph Mullins, P.E., VDOT Wise Assistant Residency Administrator. “Drivers should yield, look left, then proceed into the roundabout if it is clear, then exit at your intended destination.”
VDOT Wise Residency staff have been working with a committee composed of faculty, local law enforcement, students and local business owners, as well as the Wise County Board of Supervisor’s Coal Severance Committee to address roadway safety concerns along Route 610 at the three schools.
In 2017, Union High School students involved in the school’s Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) organization researched driver safety issues at the school and were participants in the committee meetings with community partners. The students recently won FCCLA’s 2017 National FACTS: Roadway Safety Achievement (RSA) Award for their efforts.
“The school and the community are very proud of the FCCLA students and the initiative they have shown for improving driver safety on and around campus,” said Connie Carico, Union High School teacher and FCCLA faculty representative.
The summertime improvements on Route 610 were funded using coal severance funds and VDOT used state forces and hired equipment to deliver a cost-effective project to address safety. Approximately $125,000 was allocated to the project, and VDOT anticipates the total project coming in under budget.
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