The corollary to this story is over in Bouldin neighborhood, they know where their circles come from, and are grouping up to try to get rid of them. The them in their case are traffic circles. The City of Austin has and continues to use them as traffic management measures, especially on roads where the cross traffic is much heavier in one direction than the other. It negates the need to stop the cross traffic, say from South 5th to South 1st on West Mary or West Annie, while allowing residents to move north south without stopping. You can read the Cities view of what they are and how they work on the City website.The residents view is that traffic especially passing east to west, doesn’t really slow down, doesn’t realize they are 4-way yields, and treats the traffic circles aka “roundabouts” as a motorized bobsled slalom course. While this might sound like fun, it isn’t.
According to residents, there are regular accidents, including a seemingly serious one this week at the traffic circle on W. Mary and S. 2nd. between two motor vehicles, the real concern though is pedestrians, cyclists who are even more vulnerable. Since these traffic circles are in use in many places through out Austin, what’s your view/experience?
The thing I find confusing with the Austin traffic circles is that there is no actual right of way. Keyword being “right”. In most of the USA there is an established rule that traffic on the right has priority. Wikipedia has a great illustration of how a traffic circle should work and how the traffic on the roundabout should have priority, irrespective of which is the bigger road. So, if you are driving on W Mary, a big trans-neighborhood road, and as you approach the traffic circle on your left, travelling from north to south is a car slightly ahead of you and will reach the traffic circle just before you, I’m guessing you’d presume you have the right of way, after all you are on the right. Wrong. And there’s the rub.
My main concern, how will the Aliens know where weird starts if they take out the circles?