Barnstable learned to love its roundabouts
To the Editor:
A recent Cape Cod Times article indicated that there is some citizen opposition to the proposed roundabout at the intersection of Barnes, Airport and Edgartown-Vineyard Haven roads in Oak Bluffs. This situation is similar to one that occured in Barnstable in the late 1990s.
A dangerous safety problem became evident at the intersection of Race Lane and Route 149, in the village of Marstons Mills. Changing the intersection to a four-way stop only resulted in more rear-end accidents. Traffic signals were proposed, but the cost was too high.
A roundabout was then proposed for the intersection. There were many people who were opposed to this different idea. After weighing the facts about roundabouts, the town fathers courageously decided to proceed with construction.
The result was a success. The new roundabout solved the traffic problems and became acceptable to the drivers of Barnstable, including most of those who had spoken out against it. Since then, two more round-abouts have been constructed in Barnstable, the most recent at the expressed request the the members of the West Barnstable Civic Association.
Robert Burgmann, an engineer, retired as town engineer for Barnstable.