MVC Airs Plan For North Bluff Roundabout

A sweeping new design for parking and traffic flow at the North Bluff bulkhead on Oak Bluffs harbor had its first airing Thursday before the full Martha’s Vineyard Commission.

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Delays Expected at Roundabout
Olivia Hull

Traffic delays are expected at the Roundabout in Oak Bluffs this week, as the White Brothers-Lynch Corporation paving company sets down the final coats of asphalt on the central intersection. Work began Monday, and is expected to conclude sometime Thursday, said Richie Combra, highway superintendent.

The construction contract states that the traffic delays not exceed five minutes.

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After Years of Planning, Roundabout Now a Reality
Sara Brown

After years of anticipation and debate, the first cars made their way through the Oak Bluffs roundabout this week.

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Roundabout Construction Yields to Traffic Jams
Sara Brown

In early April, without any fanfare, the Vineyard lost its only traffic signal.

With the installation of a roundabout now about two weeks away, the two blinking lights at the intersection of Barnes Road and Edgartown-Vineyard Haven Road were taken away to the Oak Bluffs highway department, their lights dimmed for the foreseeable future.

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Roundabout Could Be Completed by May
Remy Tumin

Trees are ready to come down, property markers have been staked and utilities are being prepared for relocation at the blinker intersection in Oak Bluffs, with all signs pointing to one direction: the roundabout project is set to begin.

Massachusetts department of transportation spokesman Michael Verseckes said this week selective trees in the area will soon be cleared in order to relocate underground wiring and make way for impending construction. If all goes according to plan, Mr. Verseckes said, the state-funded project could be completed as early as May.

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Roundabout Stays on Course
Sara Brown

The Oak Bluffs selectmen took a significant step toward construction of the controversial blinker section roundabout on Monday morning, signing documents for temporary easements to take some small parcels of land bordering the road by eminent domain.

Construction on the state-funded $1.5 million traffic improvement project is expected to begin in October.

Highway superintendent Richard Combra told the selectmen yesterday that the town would spend about $12,150 from Chapter 90 funds to pay for the easements, prompting selectman Gail Barmakian to balk.

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Roundabout Appeal Begins in Court

West Tisbury and Edgartown this week took the Martha’s Vineyard Commission to court seeking to block the roundabout project that has become a lightning rod over periodic traffic congestion at the center of the Island.

In their lawsuit filed in Dukes County superior court on Wednesday, the two towns seek to invalidate the commission’s Oct. 6 decision – which was affirmed on Nov. 3 — and force a more thorough review of the proposed project planned for the blinker intersection of Edgartown-Vineyard Haven and Barnes Roads.

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Roundabout Appeal Talks Begin behind Closed Doors

Attorney fees for the lawsuit against the Martha’s Vineyard Commission’s roundabout decision will not come out of the town’s annual operating budget, West Tisbury selectmen said this week.

“I think it’s better not to try to budget . . . extraordinary legal events,” selectman Cynthia Mitchell said at the board’s meeting, held on Tuesday this week. “It ought to be raised separately not as part of the budget. And in that way you get the opportunity to ask the voters how do you feel about such a lawsuit.”

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Roundabout Way to Love Vineyard
Craig Witaker

If you see one bark beetle and you are an entomolo gist, you know immediately you’ve got big problems. Those beetles can eat an entire forest.

I’ve long thought that we are making a mess of Island roads — a widening here, a widening there and the Island rural character slowly dribbles away. I’ve looked diligently to see whether these changes were just products of inattention or a real contagion bent on making Martha’s Vineyard look more like everywhere else.

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MVC Member Presses: Reconsider Roundabout
Peter Brannen

A longtime member of the Martha’s Vineyard Commission moved last night to reconsider the vote on the roundabout.

“This is going to be our last opportunity to reconsider this decision,” said Leonard Jason Jr. “We have a chance, in my mind, to put the bullet back in the gun.” The comments came at the regular commission meeting last evening.

The commission voted narrowly two weeks ago to approve the controversial traffic improvement for the blinker intersection in Oak Bluffs. The vote was 7-6. Mr. Jason was a vocal opponent.

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