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MTSUBlueraider86

Nashville needs more Roundabouts.

25 posts in this topic


I am a very big fan of roundabouts! I like them for the reasons listed in that article.

Their application on busy streets can work really well and help define a space and/or district. Roundabouts on main streets can also contribute quite nicely to the feel and experience of a place - if the circles are monumentally adorned they can create nice gateways and boundaries into a place (especially if they are visible from one another).

They can get chaotic in terms of traffic management during peak hours only because so many don't know protocol. Even still I think they work better than a four-way lighted intersection. They're certainly more desirable during non-peak hours.

Where I really like roundabouts is in neighborhoods! In my experiece they work so much better than 4-way stops. They eliminate the need to stop completely (and for some accelerate like they're dragsters) when the hood is a traffic ghost town. They slow speed generally through the hood. They don't get tied up during peak neighborhood use. Oh, and my favorite reason for liking them: they can really beautify a neighborhood. Plant a nice shade tree or erect an interesting piece of artwork and the character of the neighborhood can change dramatically!

I'm moving into a developing-trendy neighborhood (Waverly-Belmont) soon and as the corridor (12S and eventually 8S) continues to intensify on that two lane street (12Ave) I can envision alot more cut-thru traffic diverting onto Acklen-Douglas-10th Av. and others. The presence of more cars doesn't necessarily bother me so much as the impact of the noise of accelerating motors and speed. I want to immediately start working the hood over on traffic calming measures in anticipation of growing traffic volumes so that the roundabouts, bump-outs, diverters, street parks/plazas, bike lanes, trees and better sidewalks are in place as the area intensifies.

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I would love to see a round-about at Nolensville and Harding Pl.!! :P No, seriously, I would. It would be interesting, nonetheless. There are a growing number of pedestrians in the area and is quite dangerous. A tall obelisk would look nice there!! :P

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One reason I don't care for roundabouts... watch the scene in "European Vacation."

:blink:

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Large traffic circles work quite nicely if everyone knows how to use them (and, frankly, is willing to be aggressive enough to get around in them without making everyone slam on their brakes...), and they definitely are great for beautification, especially when combined with a wide avenue. And I love them in neighborhoods. They're absolutely beautiful surrounding a small fountain or monument, and make for a nice green space in a neighborhood, or open market spot in more urbanized areas. Biggest problem though is that there are so few in the United States that no one knows how to properly use them. And American drivers are so terrible and, frankly, unable to adapt to an unfamiliar situation, that they tend to freak out when they see them.

We have a couple here in Philadelphia on the Ben Franklin Parkway. When you first come on them, they're horrifying, but once you get the hang of it and know where the exits are, then they're great. One of my favorite uses near where I currently reside is here: http://g.co/maps/raawj . It successfully combines a roundabout with an on and offramp system for a busier road in what otherwise would be a nightmare intersection of 3 busy roads.

Edited by Volanova

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Well, the one reason I loathe them is virtually every time we went to visit my mother's friends in Peekskill, NY, we'd have a mishap at a roundabout on the west side of the Bear Mountain Bridge on the Hudson. We'd end up turning off on the wrong side and have to drive umpteen miles south to another exit and back up in order to correct the mistake. Sure, they look pretty sometimes, but when you keep having a situation like that (or one like the Griswolds), they're far from convenient options.

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Well, the one reason I loathe them is virtually every time we went to visit my mother's friends in Peekskill, NY, we'd have a mishap at a roundabout on the west side of the Bear Mountain Bridge on the Hudson. We'd end up turning off on the wrong side and have to drive umpteen miles south to another exit and back up in order to correct the mistake. Sure, they look pretty sometimes, but when you keep having a situation like that (or one like the Griswolds), they're far from convenient options.

I understand what you're saying, but at the same time, the exact same argument could potentially be made against interstates. The easy solution to the problem of missing your exit, of course, would simply be to make sure you don't miss your exit. ;)

They're absolutely beautiful surrounding a small fountain or monument, and make for a nice green space in a neighborhood, or open market spot in more urbanized areas.

Or in Nashville's case, a mowed lawn with a couple flower beds. Ha...I apologize for my cynicism. I love our city with a deep passion, but at times, our overall cheapness gets on my nerves. :)

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Mowed lawn? Flower beds? That's only in the high end of town! In Nashville, you're lucky if it's not overgrown weeds with garbage! Cheapness is definitely too often on display in Nashville unless there is a dedicated group of volunteers or a "Friends of" affinity group.

On the topic of roundabouts, many of the historic town squares in communities surrounding Nashville function as a roundabout. One immediately thinks of Franklin, TN, but also Lebanon, TN. Glasgow, KY has a really nice town square like that. Even Centerville, TN functions that way. I always enjoy driving through the historic towns surrounding Nashville on my way to visit friends and family.

Edited by bwithers1

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Mowed lawn? Flower beds? That's only in the high end of town! In Nashville, you're lucky if it's not overgrown weeds with garbage! Cheapness is definitely too often on display in Nashville unless there is a dedicated group of volunteers or a "Friends of" affinity group.

On the topic of roundabouts, many of the historic town squares in communities surrounding Nashville function as a roundabout. One immediately thinks of Franklin, TN, but also Lebanon, TN. Glasgow, KY has a really nice town square like that. Even Centerville, TN functions that way. I always enjoy driving through the historic towns surrounding Nashville on my way to visit friends and family.

I used to go to the optician's office in Centerville, but that one still manages to confuse me somehow. Another interesting one around the courthouse square is in Waynesboro.

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After driving through Music Circle a few times in the last few weeks, I must say that it's a pretty horribly designed roundabout. It's a little too tight of a circle for the amount of traffic there in rush hour, it's not wide enough for two lanes of traffic, and it's very poorly marked. A foot wider and a few painted lines would make it much more driver- and pedestrian-friendly.

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After driving through Music Circle a few times in the last few weeks, I must say that it's a pretty horribly designed roundabout. It's a little too tight of a circle for the amount of traffic there in rush hour, it's not wide enough for two lanes of traffic, and it's very poorly marked. A foot wider and a few painted lines would make it much more driver- and pedestrian-friendly.

An example of what happens when planners think they can be Engineers. Its always a mess and usually a safety hazard.

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Living in New York and seeing Columbus Circle often, I don't think the Roundabout at Music Row was poorly planned at all. I just wish it was in a more prominent location in downtown.

I'm really hoping for some beautiful art to be at the roundabout at the convention center.

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I understand that the art for the roundabout will be decided later this fall. If it's to be a water fountain, would'nt that be something that would need to be planned for in advance. I hope that the art is bold and well lighted at night with a way of color change for special events.

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I don't think I've seen any mention here of some of Nashville's smaller roundabouts. The circles at four intersections at the corners of the Bicentennial Mall replace four-way stops...and do so VERY well. Good examples of how roundabouts could function in neighborhoods.

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I don't think I've seen any mention here of some of Nashville's smaller roundabouts. The circles at four intersections at the corners of the Bicentennial Mall replace four-way stops...and do so VERY well. Good examples of how roundabouts could function in neighborhoods.

Indeed, roundabouts like those are perfect for neighborhoods. They allow traffic to flow more smoothly, save gas, and if done properly can add a lot of aesthetics to a street.

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Indeed, roundabouts like those are perfect for neighborhoods. They allow traffic to flow more smoothly, save gas, and if done properly can add a lot of aesthetics to a street.

But then, there's Copperfield Subdivision in South Nashville... We drove through there last Christmas and their miniature roundababouts are, well, kind of silly: http://g.co/maps/5j9qh

...not to mention a bit dangerous!

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But then, there's Copperfield Subdivision in South Nashville... We drove through there last Christmas and their miniature roundababouts are, well, kind of silly: http://g.co/maps/5j9qh

...not to mention a bit dangerous!

What in the world is the point of those? Wow. Silly is an understatement! Ohhhh suburbia...where everything is simply a fake superficial feature for vanity sake, and form and function go out the window.

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What in the world is the point of those? Wow. Silly is an understatement! Ohhhh suburbia...where everything is simply a fake superficial feature for vanity sake, and form and function go out the window.

I live close to there. The point was to slow people down because people used that subdivision as a cut through between OHB and Cloverland Dr. Not sure if it worked or not, but the point of those wasn't exactly the normal point of a roundabout.

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^Couldn't that have been done with speed bumps or stop signs at a cheaper cost and have been just as functional?

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I'm sure it could have. Like I said, I have no idea if the "roundabouts" have been successful or even what the decision process was for putting them in.

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I'm not sure, they slow people down, but they are much worse for wear on vehicles. Seattle does this a lot in their neighborhoods, and it seems to work just fine.

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After living in the Savannah historic district and going to Hilton Head Island beaches the roundabouts became the norm. I can say for certain that if designed correctly they work very well. The key is to always allow more than enough space entering and exiting the circle. It may sound very simple but I've been around, so to speak. Ha Sorry

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I can say for certain that if designed correctly they work very well.

This is the key. A poorly designed or poorly placed roundabout is at best a waste of money, at worst a dangerous and confusing mess. A well designed one that is thoughtfully placed with plenty of room and effective signage can increase safety, improve the flow of traffic, and provide a beautiful addition to a neighborhood or district.

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