Here's some good news and potentially bad news for residents in the Oneonta and surrounding area. The good news is that 19th District Congressman Antonio Delgado has secured federal funding for road projects in Otsego and Schoharie Counties. Congress passed the “INVEST in America Act” which includes $3.2 million.

Part of that funding will be used to replace an almost 100-year-old bridge over Schoharie Creek that the New York State Department of Transportation says is "structurally and functionally obsolete”. That would cost a little over $6.2 million.

Here's the bad news for some area residents in Oneonta...part of the funding would also be used to reconstruct the intersection of Rt 7, Rt. 23 and Maple St. in Oneonta into a roundabout and the thought of a roundabout for many, makes them feel nervous since many people rarely experience roundabouts in our area. The price tag on that project is estimated at about $3.2 million. According to Delgado's office, that roundabout would enhance walking, biking, and pedestrian safety. If you're wondering how that's possible. Here's how a roundabout promotes safety for both drivers and pedestrians and cyclists.

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According to www.commuteoptions.org, Studies of intersections in the United States that were converted from traffic signals or stop signs into roundabouts found that roundabouts decreased the number of vehicle crashes by 35 to 47 percent. A roundabout also decreases pedestrian-related accidents by 30 to 40 percent, bicycle-vehicle collisions are typically reduced by around 10 percent.

The reason roundabouts are safer for all involved is that they make vehicles travel slower, at an average speed of 15 to 20 miles per hour, which makes everyone safer. Factor in that all parties are traveling in the same direction so that no one is ever crossing anyone's path.

For those of you who are still not convinced that you want a roundabout in Oneonta, it still has to pass in the Senate for it to become a reality.

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