|The roundabout as seen from Jayhawk Street.|
There’s a new traffic pattern on Ravensworth Road as the Virginia Department of Transportation has marked off the area at the Jayhawk Street/Fountainhead Drive in Annandale where a temporary roundabout will be installed.
Drivers who want to turn left from those streets onto Ravensworth will have to go around the circle. The project is expected to be completed in June.
The roundabout is a pilot project funded by the Federal Highway Administration. It will be constructed of recycled composite materials and could be removed if an evaluation shows it isn’t effective. If it is effective, it would become permanent.
What it’s supposed to do is control traffic flow, reduce speeds, and improve pedestrian safety, although it wouldn’t have an impact on traffic volume.
Cars are expected to reduce their speeds to about 15 to 20 mph as they approach the roundabout and would yield to traffic already in it. Four vehicles would be able to enter the circle at the same time and would all go in the same counterclockwise direction. As a result, cars wouldn’t be piling up as they wait to get through the intersection.
The mini roundabout would cost about $175,000, compared to $300,000 to $400,000 for a signalized intersection.