Friday, December 2, 2022

Old Taylor Roundabouts Confuse Residents, Best for Long Haul

Oxford motorists are no stranger to large circles of traffic where most towns would have traffic lights or stop signs, but two new traffic patterns on a growing stretch of road are confusing a number of residents.

Two new roundabouts on Old Taylor Road from Mississippi Department of Transportation have decreased traffic congestion significantly since their implementation in August, but many residents are still unsure how to operate them.
Two new roundabouts on Old Taylor Road from Mississippi Department of Transportation have decreased traffic congestion significantly since their implementation in August, but many residents are still unsure how to operate them.

Over the summer, two new roundabouts appeared at the entrance and exit to Highway 6 from Old Taylor Road. Oxford assistant city engineer Reanna Mayoral said the project was planned this way to complete the construction while students were away for the summer and before football season kicked into gear in August.
Mayoral was instrumental in the construction of the South Lamar Avenue roundabouts, and she remembers a time when many people would get trapped on Frontage Road who wanted to head to the Square. Now, Oxonians know immediately to shift to the left-hand side of the exit ramp, and Mayoral thinks the same changes will happen over time.
“As soon as everybody gets used to it and learns which lane they need to be in as they go through it, they are really going to help those intersections,” Mayoral said. “I’ve already noticed that you don’t come through there and see traffic backed up. If you didn’t know better you wouldn’t think it was a heavily traveled road because there’s so much space and there’s plenty of room for traffic to flow through, so it doesn’t look or feel as busy as it actually is.”
Screen-Shot-2014-08-08-at-10.37.09-AMMississippi Department of Transportation officials worked all summer to complete both of the multi-lane roundabouts to help alleviate the congestion of traffic both on the ramps and on Old Taylor during peak hours without halting traffic in any direction. The project also included adding a safer path for pedestrians and cyclists on the Highway 6 overpass.
MDOT public affairs agent Jason Scott offered these tips to Oxford drivers for preparing for the roundabouts before you encounter them.
-Always yield to vehicles that are already traveling through the roundabout.
-Make sure you choose the correct lane before you enter the roundabout. Once you enter a roundabout, you must stay in your lane.
-To make a left turn: enter the roundabout, staying in the left lane and make a sweeping left turn three-quarters of the way around the center of the roundabout.
-To make a right turn: as you approach the roundabout, make sure you are in the right lane. Yield to traffic already in the circle. Enter the roundabout and make a sweeping right turn one-quarter of the way around the roundabout, staying to the right of the roadway median as you exit the roundabout.
-To make a U-turn: as you near the roundabout, make sure you are in the left lane. Yield to traffic already in the circle. If no cars are in the roundabout, you may enter. Enter the roundabout, staying in the left lane and make a sweeping left turn completely around the center of the roundabout. Exit the roundabout, staying to the right of the roadway median. Check to make sure there is no traffic in the outside lane before you exit.
MDOT is responsible for more than a dozen roundabouts in Mississippi, and Scott said the proof that the traffic patterns are effective is in the numbers.
“The traffic data shows that because it keeps traffic moving and the design forces cars to slow down,” Scott said. “You don’t have people running stop signs or yellow lights. It does make it a lot safer because you’ve got low speeds, having to watch other cars come into the roundabout, but it also cuts back on the congestion.”
Amelia Camurati is managing editor for HottyToddy.com. Shoot her an email at amelia.camurati@hottytoddy.com for comments, criticism, or story ideas.

84,459FansLike
20,500FollowersFollow
14,100FollowersFollow