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How Do You Feel About Traverse City Building Roundabouts?

Roundabouts are a hot topic in Traverse City. Peter Payette looks at the pros and cons in "Should Traverse City Have Traffic Roundabouts?" on and there's a conversation starting. Peter starts out...

"In the opinion of Traverse City Mayor Chris Bzdok roundabouts are the only option now on the table that would do anything to make Division Street safer and easier for people to cross on foot or a bike. Transportation engineers say roundabouts slow traffic, eliminate waiting at stop lights and reduce the number of serious accidents. But getting a clear read on public opinion about a proposal to build a series of roundabouts between Grandview Parkway and 14th Street may be a tall order. The community appears to be polarized on roundabouts, which need voter approval; other aspects of the proposal could be controversial as well." Read on...

And join in the conversation.

Views: 21

Tags: Flag, bzdok, chris, city, development, mi, roundabouts, traverse


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Comment by Thom Villing on May 17, 2010 at 8:16am
That's a good question. As I understand it, the same rules apply for stopping to allow pedestrian traffic as with any other intersection. Crosswalks are placed at the legs or exits of the roundabout. Again, this is not an area of personal expertise, but it seems to me that here too the key is driver education so they are looking for pedestrians crossing just as they should be at a conventional intersection.
Comment by Jodi Simpson on May 13, 2010 at 11:11am
I've driven through roundabouts in other cities without incident. However, I can't remember how pedestrians cross traffic. Thom, could you please remind me?
Comment by Thom Villing on May 6, 2010 at 9:27am
Thanks, Deb. By all means, feel free to use this in any way you would like. And if I can provide anything else, please let me know.
Comment by Deb Fellows on May 6, 2010 at 9:18am
Really great points, Thom. This is a really confusing issue and surprisingly emotional as well. I think the call for education is key. Mind if I copy and paste your comments into the comment section in the article on It would be great for people interested in this topic to see your comments in both places. Or you can drop your thoughts in there yourself. Here's the link to the article. Thanks again for sharing your thoughts. Hope you're well.

Should Traverse City Have Traffic Roundabouts?
Comment by Thom Villing on May 5, 2010 at 5:21pm
I'm not an engineer, but our marketing agency is doing work with a civil engineering firm in South Bend that will be handling a roundabout project. This much I know. People need to be educated about them. They are inherently much, much safer than traditional intersections. But part of the educational process is teaching people how to use them. In the last few years, about four roundabouts have been built in South Bend including two on my way to work. It is very annoying how many people feel they need to stop before entering. Some are totally reluctant to get into the flow of the intersection. This unnecessary stoppage defeats much of the point of a roundabout. So I would encourage Traverse City to include a public education campaign as part of the process.


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