Rio Rancho's Love Of Roundabouts And Road Diets

The city of Rio Rancho has been putting in roundabouts all over the place and installing “road diets” which I didn’t know what they were called. I learned about them in a Rio Rancho Observer article.

Road diets, according to the United States Department of Transportation, are often conversions of four-lane, undivided roads into three lanes. The fourth lane may be converted to bicycle lanes, sidewalks and/or on-street parking.

The Federal Highway Administration touts roundabouts as being safer than four-way stops.

Roundabouts are touted as being safer because there are less points of conflict than with a four-way stop. Eight with roundabouts, compared to 32. There also are no right angles, meaning less of an impact if a crash were to occur.

According to the Department of Transportation, roundabouts have contributed to a 90 percent reduction in traffic fatalities, a 76 percent reduction in injuries and a 35 percent reduction in crashes. The DOT also says the roundabouts are safer for pedestrians.

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