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Durston Road re-opens for winter, including Ferguson roundabout

Neighbors react to traffic flow returning to western Bozeman
Posted at 8:20 PM, Nov 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-25 22:20:59-05

If you’ve grown used to detours and dodging orange cones along Durston Road, you might be noticing a big difference. For the most part, the road is back open.

MTN News first stood at the corner to tell you about what was about to happen to this intersection back in July.

As of Monday, Bozeman city engineers say the roundabout is complete enough to let traffic through it — at least for winter.

The same can be said about the once-bumpy Cottonwood Road.

“Oh, it was a very well-needed project," says Mark McKernan, who lives on Kimball near Durston Rd.

Nearly four months of concrete ripping, road closure sign placing and safety vest wearing later, the “Road Closed” signs are starting to disappear.

“I’m glad it’s open because the stop signs there weren’t working," says Mark McKernan, who lives close to the Durston-Ferguson roundabout.

Traffic once again has a route through the new Durston-Ferguson roundabout.

McKernan is one of many who live within sight and earshot of the construction.

“The traffic would get all the way down Ferguson at 5 o’clock, here, three, four blocks down so the roundabout is going to make this go a lot faster," he says.

And just down the road, Cottonwood Road has followed suit.

McKernan says both projects forced traffic into their once-quiet neighborhoods.

“It’s taken about 1,500 cars off of this side road here on Kimball and that was getting bad," McKernan says.

For those living near Cottonwood or the Durston-Ferguson intersection, they say it’s a relief to see that the signs are gone while there are still a lot of orange cones out and the fact that the Durston-Ferguson intersection, while it once was a large mound of dirt, if you look nearby, the big mounds are still there, indicating there’s still work to be done.

Project engineer Bob Murray confirms the work isn’t over yet.

“They’re doing some temporary tie-ins and clean up and making everything safe enough to get some traffic control up for the winter," Murray says.

Yet, McKernan says the return of routine traffic where it should be is a welcoming sign.

“I think that they did a really good job and it was quick," McKernan says.

Engineers say the project is still on track to be completed in early spring while adding, as always, that weather could change that, making new potholes large quickly.