The North Bluff bulkhead was quiet Tuesday morning as the sun rose over the water. A few people idled in their cars on Lake avenue, gulls circled overhead and waves crested in the harbor.

It was a familiar sight for mid-March; the difference this year, though, is a new roundabout located at the end of Seaview avenue, where the Island Queen, Hy-Line and Rhode Island Fast Ferry unload each summer and the Patriot Party Boat docks year-round.

Construction on the roundabout and revamped parking area began in October as part of phase two of Oak Bluff’s streetscape master plan. Phase one focused on Circuit avenue and the area around Healey Square. Phase two should be completed by Memorial Day, said Oak Bluffs town administrator Deborah Potter.

Sidewalks have been widened considerably for pedestrians. — Ray Ewing

“We should have more than sufficient time for the paving to be completed, to cure and to paint before Memorial Day weekend,” she wrote in an email to the Gazette.

For now, the project is on hold until the asphalt manufacturer, Lawrence Lynch Corp., resumes operation, she added.

“The resumption of the plan is weather dependent,” Ms. Potter wrote.

Tim Wong, the design project manager for the North Bluff modification, said he is happy with how the project has progressed thus far, noting that the project is 75 per cent complete and that he hopes to officially open the area for pedestrian traffic soon.

“I’m feeling good about it. It went pretty smoothly,” he said in a phone interview on Monday.

The broad redesign of the area, aimed at revamping the congested parking area and creating larger pedestrian walkways, was approved by the Martha’s Vineyard Commission in December of 2022. At that meeting, some residents were concerned that fewer parking spaces would make the traffic worse. However, the final plan called for eliminating just one space, down to 64 from 65. The spaces run from the loading area down to Circuit avenue extension.

The plan did call for a redistribution of spaces, with 19 four-hour parking spots instead of 24, 10 two-hour parking spots as opposed to the original 11, and 11 parking spots for 15-minutes instead of the existing 15.

Previously, there were no spaces dedicated for active drop-off; there are now eight. Buses and taxis have the same number of spaces, located to the west of the roundabout. One space is reserved for the harbormaster, with others reserved for commercial fishermen.

The Patriot boat has moved its docking further down the harbor. — Ray Ewing

Concerns remain, though. Jason Lew’s home abuts the new roundabout and like several other residents nearby, he is worried about how it will affect traffic. The widened sidewalks mean there is less street overall, he said, and he feels the area designated for pickup and drop-off is not big enough because the taxi stand takes up part of the road.

“A lot of cars wait for people to come off and then they just maneuver and get out,” he said on a recent walk-through of the area. “I don’t know where they’re going to put all that. I just hope that the engineers know what they are talking about.”

Mr. Lew is also concerned about aesthetics.

“They’ve made a forest of road signs,” he said, pointing out 30 signs posted throughout the roundabout. He noted that the greenery included in the design has not been planted yet, so the image is not complete.

“I hope I’m wrong and I hope it comes out to be more beautiful in the end,” he said. “They’ve made some beautiful stone walls....They look very handsome, and they’ve increased the amount of area for the passengers.”

During construction this winter, Patriot Party Boats had to move its docking operation to further down the harbor. Owner Jim Tietje said he is looking forward to the project being completed.

“Every day we go by hoping it’ll be finished so we can start docking there again,” Mr. Tietje said.

He is also worried about how the rotary will work during the busy summer season.

A neighbor has complained about the number of signs. — Ray Ewing

“When people come down to drop stuff off, if they can’t find a space they might just block the rotary off.”

Todd Bidwell, general manager of the Island Queen, is also taking a wait-and-see approach, saying it is too early to tell what the roundabout’s impact on traffic and the ferry might be.

Philip Scudder, managing partner at Hy-Line Cruises, and Charlie Donadio, president of Rhode Island Fast Ferry, are feeling more optimistic.

“I received some recent photos from one of our seasonal dock workers and it’s looking really nice,” Mr. Donadio said. “The improvements are long awaited and very welcome. It’s good for the passengers, good for staging. There is more seating.”