University of Connecticut NW Science Quad Roundabout

Storrs, CT

As part of the University of Connecticut’s (UConn) landmark Northwest Science Quad project, VHB designed a unique hybrid roundabout—the first of its kind on the University’s Storrs campus. Right-sized to fit the constraints of a small hillside site across from a 1,000-plus-space parking garage, the roundabout has transformed an intersection beset by congestion and pedestrian safety issues into a safe and smoothly flowing critical link to the science district.

The Northwest Science Quad project connects the new 198,000-square-foot Science 1 Research Center to the problematic Hillside/Alumni intersection via a new woodland walkway corridor, realigning the intersection to safely accommodate the science quad’s substantial foot traffic while smoothly circulating traffic. After reviewing 20 reconfiguration concepts drafted by VHB’s engineers, the project team, including UConn, architect Payette, and other stakeholders, ultimately settled on the unconventional yet safest and most effective alternative—reconstructing the intersection as a 91-foot-diameter hybrid mini-roundabout. Redesigned walkways and raised splitter islands encourage crosswalk use and enhance pedestrian safety while overcoming grading challenges via the addition of a traversable center island for large vehicle accessibility. The team’s design solution has improved conditions for all users and alleviated congestion while reducing carbon emissions, helping to advance UConn’s sustainability initiatives.

Cars driving around and exiting a roundabout Aerial view of four-way stop intersection Aerial view of roundabout


  • University of Connecticut University Planning, Design and Construction


  • Alternatives Analysis

  • Pedestrian Safety Studies

  • Roundabout Design & Engineering

  • Sidewalk Design

  • Site/Civil Engineering

  • Traffic Calming Design

  • Traffic Engineering

  • Transportation Planning & Engineering