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Fear not roundabouts

I read with dismay Chris Clark’s Guelph Matters column dismissing roundabouts as the source of traffic chaos (Tribune, April 15).
As an ex-pat Englishman who grew up driving in a roundabout-rich environment, I don’t suffer the indecision that evidently Guelph drivers do when confronted by these marvelous traffic metering devices. If the rules of the highway are observed properly, they completely remove the artificially induced backups that all traffic lights create at busy intersections during the day, and at off-peak times remove the necessity of sitting for sometimes three minutes or more in an intersection where absolutely no other traffic is present.
If you don’t believe how well they work, take a drive down to Kitchener and check out the intersection of Bridgeport and Lancaster at 4.30 p.m. on a Friday evening.  This intersection was famous for half-mile backups and half-hour delays when it was regulated by a traffic light. Since it was replaced by a roundabout, that delay is now typically less than two minutes, even at the height of rush hour.
I would submit that a majority of Guelph drivers are victims of a paranoia regarding roundabouts that is at least in part induced by articles such as your own editorial.
If they took the time to try them out, let them take a few trips to Kitchener, Cambridge, Elora, Fergus, or any of the other municipalities that have had the foresight to replace some of their most tiresome lights: and let’s support council’s somewhat belated initiative to introduce them to Guelph.
Rick Avery

One Response to “Fear not roundabouts”

  1. bmcmulle says:

    We only have about 30 percent of transit serving downtown right now.We need 100 percent of transit there and a roundabout would effectively kill transit at the square for good.
    Some downtown business owners have lost as much as 30 percent of their customers due to lack of transit.
    Time for council and the mayor to stop thinking about complete waste of time and money projects like this and start restoring the lost business and the ability for all the seniors and people with mobility issues to start coming downtown again without all the hardships of being dragged through GCS which adds time and transfers to their trip.

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