Of two controversial traffic circles proposed in Ahwatukee Foothills, one will become permanent, while the other will be removed later this month, a Phoenix transportation appeals board ruled Tuesday.

The five-member appeals board - consisting of representatives from several city departments, including Neighborhood Services, Planning and the Fire Department - voted unanimously to reject appeals filed by several neighbors against each of the roundabouts, said Kerry Wilcoxon, Street Transportation Department spokesman.

"We didn't have a lot of people show up," he said.

One appeal had attempted to overturn the city's approval in July of a permanent roundabout, with a price tag of up to $350,000, at East Equestrian Trail and South Appaloosa Drive. The money would come from a transportation bond issue approved by a city-wide vote in 2006, Wilcoxon said.

Officials are planning to host a neighborhood meeting about the project during the week of Sept. 27, although an exact date and time has not yet been determined, Wilcoxon said. Design work is expected to begin soon after, with construction possibly beginning next summer, he added.

The second appeal challenged the decision to remove a temporary traffic circle at 36th and Coconino streets. The temporary roundabout, which has been in place for more than a year, is slated to be removed this month, Wilcoxon said.

Neighborhood residents had petitioned Phoenix to install the two roundabouts because of problems with speeders. Supporters of the Equestrian/Appaloosa roundabout barely managed to reach the threshold of 61 signatures needed from neighborhood residents to push through the permanent traffic circle, officials have said.

Support for the one at 36th and Coconino streets fizzled out with no petition having been filed to make it permanent.

Contact Writer: (480) 898-7914 or acohn@ahwatukee.com

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