A project to add a roundabout to the intersection of Brighton Avenue, Deering Avenue and Falmouth Street has been designed and funded and is expected to go out to bid later this month. Michael Kelley / The Forecaster

PORTLAND — A joint $3.27 million project between the city and state to add a roundabout and make other safety improvements to a dangerous intersection at the University of Southern Maine campus is expected to go to bid later this month.

The City Council gave preliminary approval Monday for the upgrades at the intersection of Falmouth Street and Brighton and Deering avenues. The Maine Department of Transportation/Portland Area Comprehensive Transportation System will pay for $2.45 million of the cost, with the city providing $818,000.

Final approval from the City Council is expected Dec. 16 and the DOT will put the project out to bid Dec. 18.

The project includes removing a section of Brighton Avenue between Falmouth and Bedford streets, converting the Brighton Avenue end of Bedford Street to two-way traffic and making other pedestrian, lighting and landscaping improvements.

The intersection, which cuts through the University of Southern Maine, is considered a high accident location, with 27 accidents there between 2016 and 2018, resulting in eight injuries.

According to the city, the roundabout, which will be named the Deering’s Corner Roundabout in honor of the Deering family that owned land there,  “will greatly improve the throughput and congestion” at the intersections. The roundabout will slow traffic and make the area  “safer for pedestrians and bicycles.”

Work to improve that intersection goes back more than seven years to 2012, when the city held a meeting about the need to improve the intersection. The roadway is heavily traveled both by motorists heading on and off the peninsula and by students going to and from King Middle School and the University of Southern Maine.

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