The installation of 11 roundabouts along Franklin Boulevard will go forward as planned. That’s in spite of an attempt to alter the way the construction plans are phased in by the City of Cambridge.

Cambridge had asked Regional Council to consider building three roundabouts at the north end of Franklin to start with; at Pinebush Road, Sheldon Drive, and Bishop Street. Then, follow the construction with a public review process for a year before deciding to proceed building roundabouts along the arterial road.

Mayor of Cambridge Doug Craig told 570 News that he and the 2 other Regional Councillors representing Cambridge are disappointed, “Regional Council has decided on instituting 11 roundabouts in 2 years on Franklin Boulevard, and the people of Cambridge are not ready for that kind of impact on their driving habits,” said Craig.

“What you have is… councillors who don’t live in Cambridge making decisions about our lives, and so it really is frustrating at times. We know our community, and we know how it operates. We don’t feel they understand that.”

Making remarks during the council meeting, Chair of the Planning and Works Committee, Jim Wideman said concern over the Franklin roundabout construction project had been raised illegitimately, “during construction on this road, we’re going to be (down to) one lane, and that’s going to cause some issues in the City of Cambridge, Wideman said, but pointed out the construction impact would be lessened by moving ahead with the original plan.

“We’re going to (build) over two years, as opposed to three to four,” Wideman said.

Wideman also pointed out the Region built six roundabouts in a row on Ira Needles without any problems, “it was very successful.”

Commissioner of Transportation and Environmental Services with the Region, Thomas Schmidt told 570 News when the shovels will hit the ground, “we’re aiming for construction start in 2015,” Schmidt said. “It’s a two year construction period, we’ll do approximately half of the project in 2015, and the other half in 2016.”