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SR 17 & Grape Drive Intersection Improvements – Why Roundabouts?

Roundabouts improve safety

Studies have shown that roundabouts are safer than traditional stop sign or signal-controlled intersections.

Roundabouts reduced injury crashes by 75 percent at intersections where stop signs or signals were previously used for traffic control, according to a study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

There are several reasons why roundabouts help reduce the likelihood and severity of collisions:

Low travel speeds – Drivers must slow down and yield to traffic before entering a roundabout. Speeds in the roundabout are typically between 15 and 20 miles per hour. The few collisions that occur in roundabouts are typically minor and cause few injuries since they occur at such low speeds.

No light to beat – Roundabouts are designed to promote a continuous, circular flow of traffic. Drivers need only yield to traffic before entering a roundabout; if there is no traffic in the roundabout, drivers are not required to stop. Because traffic is constantly flowing through the intersection, drivers don’t have the incentive to speed up to try and “beat the light,” like they might at a traditional intersection.

One-way travel – Roads entering a roundabout are gently curved to direct drivers into the intersection and help them travel counterclockwise around the roundabout. The curved roads and one-way travel around the roundabout eliminate the possibility for T-bone and head-on collisions.

Reduce Delay and improve traffic flow

Contrary to many peoples’ perceptions, roundabouts actually move traffic through an intersection more quickly, and with less congestion on approaching roads. Roundabouts promote a continuous flow of traffic. Unlike intersections with traffic signals, drivers don’t have to wait for a green light at a roundabout to get through the intersection. Traffic is not required to stop – only yield – so the intersection can handle more traffic in the same amount of time.

Less expensive to maintain

Roundabouts eliminate hardware, maintenance, and electrical costs associated with traffic signals

How do I drive a roundabout?

For information about driving roundabouts, check out this video or read our brochure.

Want to learn more about roundabouts?

To learn more about these topics and other benefits of roundabouts, visit our roundabout webpage.