Hillsborough Street upgrades project to take 18 months

Hillsborough Street.

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Expect more traffic delays on Raleigh’s Hillsborough Street as the city gets ready to begin phase two of a $17 million rehab project that will take 18 months to complete.

Hillsborough Street upgrades began several years ago with the goal of making the street safer for pedestrians and easier for drivers to navigate.

Medians will be raised and marked bike lanes will be added and traffic lights will be replaced by three new roundabouts.

Project engineer Richard Dickie said the roundabouts will create a more even flow of traffic. “You won’t have the stop-start you get with a red-light, green-light situation.”

“You won’t have the stop-start you get with a red-light, green-light situation,” he said.

That construction will affect some of the businesses along the street for a year and a half. One business owner says he can live with that disruption but he thinks it’ll be difficult to live with the final result.

“In the long-term I’m concerned with turning Hillsborough Street into a slow-moving garden path instead of a traffic thoroughfare,” business owner Don Ellington said. “It was built to move traffic in and out of Raleigh — not to be a garden path for students.”

Ellington says he’s on board with the streetscape improvements such as better lighting and cosmetic improvements but he predicts Hillsborough Street will be more congested with traffic — not less congested – after the additional roundabouts are added.

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