Benefits of Roundabouts

Roundabout road sign

While roundabouts are a relatively new type of intersection in Halton, they are becoming more common in surrounding municipalities as evidence of their benefits grows. Not only are they safe, they also improve traffic flow and are cost effective.

Lower Speeds

Motorists entering a roundabout must yield to oncoming traffic. This slows down the traffic flow without stopping it and is proven safer than traffic lights where higher speed collisions occur.

Fewer Delays

A standard stop sign or traffic signal controlled intersection always has at least one direction of traffic stopped. A roundabout uses yield-at-entry traffic control to eliminate stopping when it’s not required.

Fewer Crashes

Roundabouts benefit from good geometry, exhibiting only a fraction of the troublesome crash patterns typical of right-angle intersections. In addition, since all vehicles are travelling in the same direction and at a lower speed in a roundabout, crashes are generally less severe. Left-hand, right-angle (T-bone) and head-on crashes are virtually eliminated by a roundabout.

Less Air and Noise Pollution

Vehicles entering a roundabout must yield at entry, but are not required to stop if the roundabout is clear. This eliminates some stop-and-go traffic associated with a stop sign or traffic signal controlled intersections. This leads to fewer vehicles idling while stopped at an intersection, which reduces the amount of vehicle emissions. Additionally, slow moving traffic makes less noise than traffic that stops and starts, resulting in quieter neighbourhoods.

Lower Maintenance

A traffic light requires electricity 24-hours a day and requires staff time to maintain regular operation. Typically, roundabouts only need electricity for streetlights at night and maintenance for landscaping, making them easier than traffic lights to maintain.