Schenectady County

And around they go: Glenridge Road traffic circle opens

Cars zoomed in, around and out of the Glenridge roundabout on Thursday, its first full day in operat

Cars zoomed in, around and out of the Glenridge roundabout on Thursday, its first full day in operation at the intersection of Glenridge Road and Maple Avenue.

The roundabout officially opened Wednesday evening, according to Bryan Viggiani, a spokesman for the state Department of Transportation. The new roundabout is one of just two roundabouts in Schenectady County; the other is in Rotterdam.

“The functionality of the roundabout is in full effect,” Viggiani said.

Glenville town Supervisor Christopher Koetzle said he is excited about the roundabout and believes it will make his commute a lot easier.

“I drove through it for the first time this morning,” he said. “It moved quite nicely.”

A stretch of Glenridge Road from Bruce Drive to Maple Avenue, which closed on June 21, is still on schedule to reopen on Sept. 8.

“The roundabout is open … you just can’t go onto Glenridge,” Viggiani said.

The DOT has been realigning and reconstructing the road and replacing the bridge that carries Glenridge Road over the Alplaus Kill.

The road closures over the past few months are the last long-term inconveniences caused by the three-year, $11.7 million project to widen the lanes and shoulders of the one-mile stretch of

Glenridge Road. When the stretch of road reopens, it will likely close again for one day during a weekend so a top layer of pavement can be applied. The project is expected to completely wrap up by Dec. 1. Two railroad bridges over the road have also been replaced with wider ones to accommodate the road’s expansion.

“I think it is going to be nice once it’s fully open,” Koetzle said.

Lisa Rice, a motorist from Glenville, agreed.

“Widening the bridges,” she said. “That’s awesome.”

On her way to Panera Bread in Glenville for lunch, Rice drove through the new roundabout. She said while she is excited to have the roundabout there, she was slightly disappointed to see it was only one lane and not two.

“I feel that there should be two, like there is in Malta,” she said. “The only reason I say that is because I travel a lot, so I know where all of the roundabouts are. In Glens Falls there is one and it is only one lane — and it’s awful. You sit there and you can’t move until everybody goes, where as with two lanes, you can merge in.”

But other than that, Rice said it is too early to tell if the roundabout will help with traffic flow.

“I work in Latham so I take the Northway, so I go up Glenridge to get to the Northway every day. So since that has been closed I have to go Route 7 and it has been a huge inconvenience,” she said. “So I can’t wait for it to open. It will be interesting to see how it changes.”

Viggiani said the decision to build one lane in the roundabout was based on the average traffic volume there.

“It has been a pretty big project. We are hoping the roundabout will help people get through that intersection more smoothly,” he said. “We do appreciate people’s patience. I think in the end people will be pleased.”

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