Saturday, July 18, 2009

Traffic Circles, Rotaries, and Roundabouts, Oh My!

What I've always called traffic circles apparently come in several varieties. A traffic circle can be very large and have many entrances that come in at an angle so the incoming vehicles don't necessarily need to slow down significantly. A rotary is a smaller version of a traffic circle. I would call the Orleans/Eastham rotary a rotary (see, I just did!). A roundabout is much smaller yet, with the entrances coming in much straighter, forcing traffic to slow down.

Rotaries and traffic circles are much safer than 'regular' intersections. While there may be lots of accidents, they tend to be fender-benders, versus injury-causing accidents.

Why is this interesting? Well, there is some consideration being given to installing a roundabout at the intersection of Routes 6A and 28 in Orleans. There seems to be a high occurrence of accidents at that intersection. Go to the Cape Cod Times article to read about this 'improvement'.

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