CITY OF WATERTOWN ROUNDABOUT CONSTRUCTION PROJECT
Paving of Watertown’s roundabout along with 11th Street East and the parking lot at the new middle school will begin on Wednesday, July 15, 2015, and is expected to take up to two weeks. The roads will remain closed until all of the paving is complete. Through traffic is advised to continue using detours on US Highway 81 and Arrow Avenue North during the closure period. The sidewalks will also remain closed in the construction zone until the streets are re-opened. Pedestrians and motorists are asked to please continue to exercise caution and patience, and to obey all traffic control devices.
Roundabouts are chosen because of impressive statistics showing that they improve intersection safety. A roundabout can offer a safer environment for pedestrians than a traffic signal because the pedestrian crossing at a roundabout is simplified to two short crossings of one-way traffic moving at slow speeds.
Driving through a roundabout is different from driving through a standard intersection. Since this is a change, many drivers feel anxious during their first few times through roundabouts. Fortunately, the steps to correctly drive through a roundabout are easy to master.
• Reduce speed and keep to the right when approaching the roundabout.
• Traffic moves in a counterclockwise direction.
• Yield to traffic in the roundabout.
• Once within the roundabout, do not stop except to avoid a collision.
• Pedestrian crossings are located away from the circular part of a roundabout. Pedestrians should cross only at these designated locations. Watch for and yield to pedestrians waiting to cross or crossing.
• Bicycles may either ride with vehicles through the roundabout or walk through the pedestrian crossings. Vehicles should treat bicyclists as other vehicles and not pass them.
Since roundabouts are new to many of Watertown’s citizens, please expect a short adjustment period as drivers get used to driving them!