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Bonneville County preps for two-lane roundabout

Construction has been going on for months on Lincoln Road in Bonneville County, but more progress is coming in the next couple of weeks. Hitt Road and Lincoln Road will be striped and opened as a two-lane roundabout in the next few weeks.

“They’re all multilane approaches,” said Michael Arneson, the project manager for Lincoln Road. “No matter what direction you’re coming from, there will be two lanes approaching the roundabout.”

The intersection at Lincoln Road and Hitt Road has been operating as a single-lane roundabout for the past couple of months, but it has only been temporary for construction.

“That’ll be a significant change in the way traffic operates and we’ll see people having to get used to that new two-lane configuration,” Arneson said.

According to Arneson, roundabouts can result in a 50 percent overall reduction in all crashes compared to a signalized intersection. It can also have an 80 percent reduction in injury crashes compared to a signalized intersection.

“Speeds will go down, and that’s part of the design of a roundabout is that for (speeds) to be low,” Arneson said. “These roundabouts are designed, once people enter into them, to be about 15 mph. It is low-speed but it’s continuous flow, so there is a lot less delay.”

How exactly do two-lane roundabouts work?

“The thought process to use is really no different if you were to use a signal,” Arneson said. “If you want to turn left, you’ll want to be in the left lane. If you want to turn right, you’ll want to be in the right lane. If you want to continue through, you can be in either lane.”

You also need to follow the rule of not changing lanes in the roundabout.

“Once you commit to that lane, stay in that lane,” Arneson said. “These function really well and very efficiently.”

Construction on both roundabouts will be complete by the end of November, including the closure of Lincoln Road from Hitt Road to Ammon Road. Bonneville County is in the process of developing another roundabout project at 45th East and First Street.

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