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Stop the roundabouts
Milwaukee Journal Sentinal ^ | October 21, 2012 | Mark A Sity

Posted on 10/22/2012 7:52:22 PM PDT by logic101.net

Stop the roundabouts

The vast majority of us hate roundabouts. Unfortunately, the state Department of Transportation loves them, as do their close friends, the road builders. Why the road builders love them is simple - they can charge us 10 times more to put them in.

Sadly, the DOT prefers to make its friends happy rather than the taxpayers. They now have taken to trying to hide their plans from us by referring to them as "broad, looping, free-flowing."

Often we will be told that they work so well in Europe. However, Europe's idea of a big truck is about the size of a U-haul van. Our big trucks have 53-foot trailers and need the entire roundabout to get around them, creating a dangerous situation.

(Excerpt) Read more at jsonline.com ...


TOPICS: Chit/Chat; Local News; Travel
KEYWORDS: dot; roundabouts; wisconsin
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I am trying to organize resistance to any new roundabouts in WI. They can be defeated, and every one that is killed will make the next easier to kill.

I have started a facebook page as a clearing house for info on new roundabouts and how to kill them:

http://www.facebook.com/RoundaoubtResistance

At this point I just want to concentrate on WI. Once we get this figured out here I'll be happy to open it up nationally. Or if someone in another state wants to take up the cause there I'll be happy to share as much info as I can.

1 posted on 10/22/2012 7:52:22 PM PDT by logic101.net
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To: logic101.net

I hate them.


2 posted on 10/22/2012 7:56:38 PM PDT by ilovesarah2012
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To: logic101.net

I hate stop lights so I love em.

I want more.


3 posted on 10/22/2012 7:58:19 PM PDT by DManA
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To: logic101.net

They are putting them in in Michigan. I hate them, they are confusing and dangerous. The newest one near me is going on an expressway overpass. What a disaster that will be! Why not just put in traffic lights?


4 posted on 10/22/2012 7:58:49 PM PDT by madison10
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To: logic101.net

I’m sorry, but your project is wrongheaded.

We have lots of roundabouts here in Kansas, and they work exactly as intended: traffic can flow smoothly through heavily traveled intersections without backing up as at traffic lights. In areas with heavy pedestrian traffic traffic lights are superior to the combination of roundabouts and pedestrian-right-of-way crossings, but in areas where it’s basically all vehicles, roundabouts are much better than traffic lights, any combination of stop-signs, or uncontrolled grade intersections.


5 posted on 10/22/2012 8:04:51 PM PDT by The_Reader_David (And when they behead your own people in the wars which are to come, then you will know...)
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Round-abouts keep traffic moving. I like them.


6 posted on 10/22/2012 8:05:15 PM PDT by stranger and pilgrim
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To: madison10

They are not dangerous. Fact is data shows they are safer then semaphore controlled intersections.


7 posted on 10/22/2012 8:13:39 PM PDT by DManA
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To: logic101.net
I like them, but here in New Jersey nobody calls them roundabouts! That sounds way too Britishy.

We call them circles.

8 posted on 10/22/2012 8:20:42 PM PDT by dead (It ain't over until the phone lady sings.)
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To: logic101.net

“Look kids, Big Ben, Parliment!” - Clark W. Griswold European Vacation


9 posted on 10/22/2012 8:21:00 PM PDT by TADSLOS (Conservatism didn't magically show up in Romney's heart in 2012. You can't force what isn't in you.)
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To: logic101.net

“Look kids, Big Ben, Parliament!” - Clark W. Griswold European Vacation


10 posted on 10/22/2012 8:21:38 PM PDT by TADSLOS (Conservatism didn't magically show up in Romney's heart in 2012. You can't force what isn't in you.)
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To: The_Reader_David
I currently live in NJ, and we've had roundabouts or circles for a 100 years, and are getting rid of them. They are fine when traffic is light, but really bite when it gets heavy and steady. So, NJ is slowly adding overpasses and other tricks to keep the heavy traffic out of the traffic circles.

We took a drive through the midwest this summer. Richfield MN has circles in the city, but they are miniscule and everybody has to slow way down to get around. It's not a horrible deal if they are used instead of bumps to slow cars, but it snarls traffic during the rush.

It was in western MN, heading toward SD, that I found the real puzzle. Driving down a 2 lane highway, we came to a traffic circle that required the semi-trailers to slow to about 15 mph in order to be sure they could get through without running their wheels up over one curb or the other. This was on a sunny summer day. I'd be interested to see how well that works in the ice and snow of winter.

When a traffic circle works for smooth flow, it has to be big enough to not give carnival ride type G forces when you go around it at traffic speeds. The traffic circle near me has a median of about 100x200 feet. You can go around this at 35 mph without a worry, and that was maybe the general traffic speed when the road was built.

But the tiny traffic circles I saw in MN have nothing to do with smooth flow of traffic, and should have no place on heavily traveled roads.

I hope Kansas did it better.

11 posted on 10/22/2012 8:27:35 PM PDT by slowhandluke (It's hard to be cynical enough in this age.)
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To: logic101.net

We had a terrible intersection where 2 major roads meet before crossing a bridge. It was always a 10-15 minute wait to get through the intersection. Now a 2 lane roundabout has replaced the old intersection and traffic moves at ~20mph but never has to stop. It’s a breeze getting through the area now.

I hope we get a lot more roundabouts here. The ones that people hate must be poorly designed.


12 posted on 10/22/2012 8:34:16 PM PDT by Straight Vermonter (Posting from deep behind the Maple Curtain)
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To: slowhandluke

Obviously they are not the solution to every situation. It is equally silly to say they are NEVER the best solution.


13 posted on 10/22/2012 8:34:17 PM PDT by DManA
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To: logic101.net
Raleigh Roundabout Debacle:

http://www.wral.com/news/local/story/7566296/

http://www.newsobserver.com/2012/07/25/2218567/crash-prone-roundabout-in-raleigh.html

14 posted on 10/22/2012 8:36:51 PM PDT by Calm_Cool_and_Elected (" Undecided Voter: someone who parades their stupidity as proof of their morality." ~David Burge)
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To: DManA

They are great for people who know how to drive...

Unfortunately, there are too many idiots out there...


15 posted on 10/22/2012 8:43:28 PM PDT by ltc8k6
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To: Calm_Cool_and_Elected

The story claims the circular was built for economic development. EVERY SINGLE thing local governments do now days they claim is for economic development.

My idiotic plan is an economic development tool. So if you oppose my plan then you oppose economic development.


16 posted on 10/22/2012 8:48:36 PM PDT by DManA
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To: ltc8k6

You need a lot of skill to merge into a 12 lane freeway too. You can’t design roads for the least common denominator.

Lewie Anderson has a funny bit about driving with his mom.

Mom: “I think I’ll pop onto the freeway.”
Lewie: “Oh my god no.”
Lewie: “So she start down the on ramp. 10mph 20 30 40 50 40 30 10 stopped. People are honking. I rolled down the window -Comemon it’s my mom!!!”


17 posted on 10/22/2012 9:06:24 PM PDT by DManA
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To: ltc8k6

You need a lot of skill to merge into a 12 lane freeway too. You can’t design roads for the least common denominator.

Lewie Anderson has a funny bit about driving with his mom.

Mom: “I think I’ll pop onto the freeway.”
Lewie: “Oh my god no.”
Lewie: “So she start down the on ramp. 10mph 20 30 40 50 40 30 10 stopped. People are honking. I rolled down the window -Comemon it’s my mom!!!”


18 posted on 10/22/2012 9:06:36 PM PDT by DManA
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To: DManA
"NEVER the best solution" -- I did not say that, I did not intend to imply that.

I noted that the circles as built in NJ worked until traffic got too high. I also noted that the traffic circles in MN seemed to have been designed to imped traffic, rather than smooth it.

The deciding factor seems to be whether the State Highway Department can be trusted to build them in areas with little enough traffic and/or big enough loops to make them really free flowing. Maybe in Kansas they can. But in MN they can't, and WI is similarly progressive and anti-automobile.

You might still be in Kansas, but many of us aren't in such conservative states.

19 posted on 10/22/2012 9:10:24 PM PDT by slowhandluke (It's hard to be cynical enough in this age.)
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To: DManA
They are not dangerous. Fact is data shows they are safer then semaphore controlled intersections.

Yep, the collisions that do occur tend to be cars heading in the same direction - not a T-bone like when a light is run, hence much safer.

20 posted on 10/22/2012 9:14:53 PM PDT by Strategerist
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To: logic101.net; Grampa Dave; tubebender; Ernest_at_the_Beach; NormsRevenge; BOBTHENAILER; ...
"Often we will be told that they work so well in Europe."

Dang you people that offer that knee-jerk observation. We ditched the old country when we established out independence from it. All you liberal European socialists just STFU!!!

I am so pleased that this newspaper is one of the first to offer a truly American observation and sound the cry to sink this outgrowth of phony moral superiority amongst lovers of liberalism.

They won't be happy till we're all riding bicycles around those stupid roundabouts dressed as Chinese Commonists in identicle clothing shaded by those cone-headed coolee hats like in 1972 when Nixon (another socialist) went there to see some ping-pong games!!!

21 posted on 10/22/2012 9:20:07 PM PDT by SierraWasp ("The New Normal," is FAR from any normality!!!)
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To: logic101.net

Until you have been on the roundabout in the middle of Paris, France, you haven’t lived (err, almost died).

I was with a seasoned French woman driver of roundabouts and that’s the worst kind because they jam their foot on the gas and brake at the same time, alternating those at the speed of light. It was frightful.

Then we had to get our bags out of the hotel and there was no place to park, so she parked in a driving lane in front of the hotel. We threw our bags in the car, all the while a police car was two cars back of us with screaming siren going trying to get to us because we were blocking that lane of traffic jammed with cars.

We took off in the car and I don’t know what happened to the cop car.

Then, another day, after shopping for china, she is driving us through the Alps and it’s two lanes made out of one lane, and there is a sheer drop off to eternity on my side. She is driving in the middle since it’s so narrow, going around blind curves at this fast speed. I am thinking the beautiful china I just bought is going to end up off the mountain along with me if a car comes around the bend.

French drivers are nuts.


22 posted on 10/22/2012 9:26:47 PM PDT by Marcella (Republican Conservatism is dead. PREPARE.)
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To: slowhandluke
I did not say that, I did not intend to imply that.

The guy who started the thread literally did.

MN they can't, and WI is similarly progressive and anti-automobile.

You are implying rounds are a conspiracy to drive people off the roads and don't even try to deny it. And your implication is insane.

23 posted on 10/22/2012 9:27:36 PM PDT by DManA
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To: madison10

They are usually only dangerous for a couple months until drivers in the area figure out who has the right-of-way, and which lane they need to be in to get to their exit point. Give them a chance, and be extra vigilant until everyone figures it out.

They really do keep traffic moving. I’ve seen the effects of pre- and post-roundabouts. We used to sit at stop signs and traffic lights for 10-15 minutes during rush hour. Now there is very little backup and traffic keeps flowing.


24 posted on 10/22/2012 9:30:30 PM PDT by Jess79
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To: SierraWasp

We lived in Naples, Italy for 3.5 years, there was a roundabout there which had 6 roads running in to it, had a small radius. One of the roads was a bridge which T into a road which was perpendicular. The Americans there called it “The Circle of Death”


25 posted on 10/22/2012 9:32:56 PM PDT by phormer phrog phlyer
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To: logic101.net

I love roundabouts, because they separate drivers from idiots. However, a lot of roundabouts are built a little too small, which makes it hard to easily maneuver around them.

There are other really cool ways to do intersections that make a lot more sense than the traditional 4-way stop sign/light. But people are resistant to change, even good change.

For example, one thing we are seeing more of is the urban interchange. In this configuration, instead of a large cloverleaf (which people do like, and which btw is a lot like a roundabout), you bring the lower road entrance/exits away from the road, but then swing them back at each other, having them intersect in a cross at the bridge with the other road. This gives you a 6-way intersection, which you can control easily with a stop light. Takes up almost no space, hence the “urban intersection”, but also reduces accidents if the cross-road is very busy (controlled light instead of idiots trying to merge).

Anyway, the thing I loved most driving in England was their roundabouts. I was actually better at them than the british drivers, who didn’t have the skill we get here in the states at speeding up to merge into small gaps.

I close with my favorite wife anecdote. We’re driving through England, where they use road signs that tell you where you are going, rather than what road you are on. We hit a roundabout, and I started circling while my Wife looked at the map to figure out which way to go off the roundabout. I circled once, twice, and said “figure out yet where we are going” and she said “no”. Circled 3, 4 times, and said “are you ever going to figure it out”, and she burst into tears.


26 posted on 10/22/2012 9:42:13 PM PDT by CharlesWayneCT
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To: logic101.net

Blame the US Department of Transportation for this one. Their FHWA guidebook says that roundabouts should be favored over traffic signals.


27 posted on 10/22/2012 9:44:12 PM PDT by Thunder90 (Kick Obama out of the White House in 2012.)
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To: logic101.net
I hate them too....the put them in the most ridiculous areas where there is hardly any traffic.....

just follow the money though....they make big bucks for somebody's friends....

28 posted on 10/22/2012 9:49:25 PM PDT by cherry
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To: Marcella
When in France, I always try to avoid

Traffic circles AND French drivers

29 posted on 10/22/2012 9:50:01 PM PDT by BlueDragon (going to change my name to "Nobody" then run for elective office)
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To: logic101.net

I love roundabouts. The ones built in Alaska have reduced congestion and greatly sped up traffic. I’m all for them.


30 posted on 10/22/2012 9:50:13 PM PDT by AlaskaErik (I served and protected my country for 31 years. Progressives spent that time trying to destroy it.)
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To: DManA

when they are deliberately undersized they are very dangerous and that is the situation we are facing around wisconsin where they sare putting them in.

you don’t live here, it is not wrong headed to oppose undersized roundabouts. besides they are also in heavy urban corridors used bylarge trucks, not ruralroads where they would be more beneficial.


31 posted on 10/22/2012 9:53:37 PM PDT by Secret Agent Man (I can neither confirm or deny that; even if I could, I couldn't - it's classified.)
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To: Secret Agent Man

OMG, you really think there is a conspiracy to hurt drivers?

You are a sad sad little man.


32 posted on 10/22/2012 9:57:49 PM PDT by DManA
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To: madison10

Why not put in traffic lights? Well, the road builders can’t charge you 10X more for the intersection, and the road builders spend allot of cash to get what they want....


33 posted on 10/22/2012 10:03:04 PM PDT by logic101.net (Support OUR troops, NOT their's!)
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To: DManA

If you think roundabouts are safer, try running inside a big truck going through one. The line “studies show” always bugs me; studies show whatever the person ordering them wants them to show. I started to write the person paying for them, then realized that is a whole different group of people....

If a group selling studies shows the “wrong” results they are done in that industry.


34 posted on 10/22/2012 10:06:37 PM PDT by logic101.net (Support OUR troops, NOT their's!)
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To: DManA

equally silly to say they are NEVER the best solution

True, however DOT in WI is putting them everywhere they can sneak them in. They are obsessed with them and need to be if not stopped at least slowed down. They are never always the best solution and often they are the worst.

DOT had to put up warning signs on I-43 about them because they backed up traffic so far on the hwy.


35 posted on 10/22/2012 10:10:39 PM PDT by logic101.net (Support OUR troops, NOT their's!)
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To: CharlesWayneCT

We hit a roundabout, and I started circling while my Wife looked at the map to figure out which way to go off the roundabout.

Yes, if you want to go around in circles roundabouts are great. However I want to get where I need to go; preferably w/o crushing any 4-wheelers in the process. When that happens the paperwork is a drag and really slows me down.


36 posted on 10/22/2012 10:16:20 PM PDT by logic101.net (Support OUR troops, NOT their's!)
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To: DManA

you are a total moron.

the roundabouts are undersized for large semis, they have a difficult time navigating them. these are not small european trucks. we have double size semis that run on our freeways and they cannot use these roundabouts, and it’s a real problem when they put them on exit ramps directly off the freeway. many of the roundabouts do not have middles that can be driven over by a large truck that can’t make the normal circle radius turn. regular semi or double length have problems.

are you such an idiot to believe that government DOT workers always get things correct? they are screwing up our traffic here, again, you do not live here.


37 posted on 10/22/2012 10:18:23 PM PDT by Secret Agent Man (I can neither confirm or deny that; even if I could, I couldn't - it's classified.)
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To: DManA

i never said conspiracy either, freak show. it’s big government stupidity.


38 posted on 10/22/2012 10:19:19 PM PDT by Secret Agent Man (I can neither confirm or deny that; even if I could, I couldn't - it's classified.)
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To: logic101.net

Why kill roundabouts?

They work better than intersections, they save time and fuel.

They are also safer than intersections.

The only reason to hate them is if you don’t know how to use them.

They are easy to use, really. Just remember:

When entering the roundabout yield to the traffic already in the roundabout. You don’t stop before entering except to yield to traffic already in the roundabout.

If you are IN the roundabout you don’t stop at each entrance/exit point (unless some idiot pulls out in front of you, of course) you have the right of way and the traffic that is waiting to enter the roundabout is supposed to yield to you.

If you miss your turn out, just go around again!

Really, if somebody can’t handle something as simple as a roundabout then they really should reconsider their fitness to be behind the wheel.


39 posted on 10/22/2012 10:32:21 PM PDT by Nik Naym (It's not my fault... I have compulsive smartass disorder.)
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To: Nik Naym; Grampa Dave; Ernest_at_the_Beach; NormsRevenge; budwiesest; BOBTHENAILER; ...
"Just remember:"

No, you remember. We live in The United States of America. We also don't drive on the wrong side of the road. We don't use the metric system. We use farenheit, not celcius. We speak english, not some foreign language. We love God and our exceptional country and we're not apologetic, or embarrassed about it!!!

Furthermore we have our own culture and traditions, mores and taboos. As long as we are good upstanding citizens we shouldn't be irritated by our government of, for and by we the people to endure anymore of this obsessive, compulsive nonsense!!!

40 posted on 10/22/2012 11:02:47 PM PDT by SierraWasp ("The New Normal," is FAR from any normality!!!)
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To: phormer phrog phlyer

Yep. The definition of insanity is to keep thinking one can improve on the American traditions. It’s not “economic development” to buck what’s worked for our fabulous nation. Instead it’s “arrested development” just like liberalism and commonism!!!


41 posted on 10/22/2012 11:13:37 PM PDT by SierraWasp ("The New Normal," is FAR from any normality!!!)
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To: SierraWasp

What the hell does a traffic circle have to do with driving on the wrong side of the road, the metric system, foreign languages, the love of God, mores and taboos?

For cripes sake, it’s just a road.

If you spent as much energy learning to drive as you do ranting incoherently you would be able to use a roundabout without crapping yourself from fear.


42 posted on 10/22/2012 11:18:04 PM PDT by Nik Naym (It's not my fault... I have compulsive smartass disorder.)
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To: Nik Naym
Well, you'd never understand beings you're just a crosseyed, bowlegged amobea jockey that just takes all the good in America for granted not having lived in her long enough to value the way things are and how beautifully they came about!!!

Stop touting change just for the sake of change. These stupid roundabouts have absolutely no redeeming social value!!!

43 posted on 10/23/2012 12:11:16 AM PDT by SierraWasp ("The New Normal," is FAR from any normality!!!)
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To: dead

“I like them, but here in New Jersey nobody calls them roundabouts! That sounds way too Britishy.

We call them circles.”

Roundabouts and circles are not the same thing. The rights of way are opposite.


44 posted on 10/23/2012 12:33:28 AM PDT by Born to Conserve
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To: logic101.net

Roundabouts beat the daylights out of four-way stops and some busy two-way stop intersections. And while the cost of the road may be higher, the cost of a traffic light is eliminated. A roundabout was built in my town at an intersection that was busy enough that the school buses couldn’t turn at rush hour, but that didn’t carry a load of traffic most of the day. Wrecks were frequent back when is was a standard two way stop intersection. I know of none since the roundabout opened. Works great.

Since interstates were developed in Germany, are they anti-American too? I don’t understand the blanket rejection. Some are good, some are great, some not-so-good.


45 posted on 10/23/2012 2:05:16 AM PDT by TN4Liberty (My tagline disappeared so this is my new one.)
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To: logic101.net

Big roundabouts are far the most sensible way to route converging traffic in European cities where roads into the city converge on central points. When properly designed they can be much quicker and smoother to navigate at a major intersection than a traffic light would be. Tulsa has one such. All the rest of the roundabouts I have seen in the USofA aree clumsy attempts to emulate Europe. It doesn’t help that in this country they remain oddities and drivers are unaccustomed to them. It only takes a small percentage of drivers that don’t deal with them well to render them dangerous and to slow progress unnecessarily.


46 posted on 10/23/2012 3:03:59 AM PDT by arthurus (Read Hazlitt's Economics In One Lesson ONLINE www.fee.org/library/books/economics-in-one-lesson)
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To: logic101.net
I hate them too! I've almost been nailed several times by cars that failed to yield to my right of way and I've seen it happen to others......

I even lightly rear-ended some lady who started into the roundabout with me following and then she suddenly stopped. When I asked her why she stopped she said she didn't know what the guy coming in on our left was going to do...(It was clear for us because the guy had stopped for traffic on his left)

47 posted on 10/23/2012 3:25:00 AM PDT by Hot Tabasco (Jab him with a harpoon.....)
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To: logic101.net

There are places where they work great, and places where they are insufficient.


48 posted on 10/23/2012 3:29:48 AM PDT by 9YearLurker
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To: logic101.net

Just curious, do you work in brake-pad sales?


49 posted on 10/23/2012 3:49:04 AM PDT by Ronaldus Magnus
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To: logic101.net

A few of them have gone up around South Bend, IN. They seem to help traffic flow in those cases. My daughter inadvertently went around one the wrong way while she was learning. Boy, did that ever piss off a couple drivers! But, in her defense, the arrows painted on roadway ahead of the circle showed a left turn/straight configuration. Glad I wasn’t there for a white knuckle experience.

Large semi-trailers at standard intersections must also hog up the road to do their thing. In the interest of better traffic efficiency I think circles are worth consideration, though they bear scrutiny due to governments’ tendency to waste and reward with gross mismanagement of funds.


50 posted on 10/23/2012 4:28:49 AM PDT by Fester Chugabrew (Candy Crowley: The MSMs' very own Agatha Trunchbull.)
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