Roundabout U

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"Roundabout U" is an outreach program of Washington County to provide guidance and information on a variety of topics related to roundabout design and usage, including instructions for drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists.

The Modern Roundabout

A modern roundabout is one of several types of intersections in which traffic flows around a circular center island.

A modern roundabout is NOT the same as high-speed rotary interchanges, once common in the Northeast states. Rotaries are larger and operate poorly because they require merging to enter and require risky lane changes to exit. See Rotaries vs. Roundabouts. A modern roundabout also is NOT the same as a traffic circle or circle road, such as within the Tamarack Village shopping area in Woodbury, where lane changes may be made within the circle and circulating traffic makes right or left turns to exit the circle road. See Traffic Circles vs. Roundabouts.

At a modern roundabout, there is no merging because entering drivers must YIELD (wait until all traffic is clear before proceeding). There are no lane changes in a modern roundabout because, as with any other intersection, the correct lane must be chosen before entering. Always keep to the left to make left turns through a roundabout, just like at any other intersection. 

CSAH 19 (Bailey) Roundabout
Roundabout - Forest Lake Photo

Advantages of Roundabouts

Roundabouts have several advantages over signals and stop signs, including:
  • Fewer injury crashes and fatalities (no “t-bone” or head-on crashes)
  • Improved pedestrian safety (low speeds, fewer lanes to cross, minimal delays, traffic from only one direction)
  • Less vehicle delay and pollution (no waiting at red lights, complete stops are not usually necessary)

In Washington County

Roundabouts within Washington County can be found at:
  • Radio Drive (CR 13) at Bailey Road (CR 18) and at Military Road (CR 20) in Woodbury (2 roundabouts)
  • 34th Street North (CR 14) at Jamaca Avenue North and Stillwater Boulevard (CR 6) in Lake Elmo
  • St. Croix Trail (CR 18) in Lakeland and Lakeland Shores (3 roundabouts)
  • Woodbury Drive (CR 19) in Woodbury at Bailey Road (CR 18) and at Lake Road (2 roundabouts)
  • Keats Ave S / Innovation Road (CR 19) at East Point Douglas Road in Cottage Grove
  • 70th Street South (CR 22) at Jamaica Ave and at Keats Ave S (CR 19) in Cottage Grove  (2 roundabouts)
  • 65th Street South (CR 74) at Goodview Ave S in Cottage Grove
  • State Highway 36 at Hilton Trail (CR 29) in Pine Springs (2 roundabouts)
  • State Highway 96 at Manning Avenue (CR 15) in Grant and Stillwater Township
  • U.S. 61 at Broadway Avenue (CR 2) in Forest Lake
  • U.S. 61 at 170th Street North (CR 4) in Hugo
  • U.S. 61 at State Highway 95 in Forest Lake (2 roundabouts)
  • U.S. 10-61 at Jamaica Avenue in Cottage Grove
  • Headwaters Parkway at Fenway Avenue N in Forest Lake
  • Along Hargis Parkway and Pioneer Drive in Woodbury (9 roundabouts)
  • Hudson Road and Spring Hill Drive in Woodbury
Roundabouts are planned for future construction at:
  • 70th Street South (CR 22) at Hinton Avenue South (CR 13) in Cottage Grove (2019)
  • Hadley Avenue (CR 35) at new interchange ramps at Highway 36 (2019)