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- By Andy Smith
Skanska has completed the UK’s first Dutch-style roundabout, which prioritises pedestrians and cyclists over motorists.
The works to redesign the existing roundabout at the
junction of Queen Edith’s Way and Fendon Road in Cambridge to a Dutch-style
model were delivered by Skanska on behalf of Cambridgeshire County Council.
Skanska won the project in summer 2019 and it took just
under 11 months for the roundabout to be reopened in its new design, with the
final phase of the works delivered under the coronavirus pandemic
Improvements to the roundabout follow public consultations
which highlighted that the old roundabout layout was perceived to be dangerous
to cycle around, with local residents reporting feeling unsafe when walking in
the area due to a lack of pedestrian crossings. The roundabout provides an
important commuter route for Addenbrooke’s Hospital and the Cambridge
Biomedical Campus and is used widely by cyclists as well as school children,
students and shoppers.
The geometry of the new roundabout is tighter than the
previous layout and promotes slower vehicle speeds, with much more space for
physical separation between the pedestrians, cyclists and cars, and a central
over-run area allowing larger vehicles to manoeuvre around the roundabout.
The new layout has an outer ring for cyclists to give them
equal priority with pedestrians over oncoming vehicles, with parallel pedestrian
crossings on each of the four arms of the roundabout. These zebra crossings
also extend over the cycle lanes. Motorists must give way to pedestrians and
cyclists when joining and leaving the roundabout.
Skanska business director John Birkenhead said: “The
roundabout’s redesign, project management and delivery was all done by our
teams working together with the client and main contractor Durman Stearn to
bring this innovative model of roundabouts to the UK. This scheme is a
fantastic example of our expertise and drive for innovation to make
Cambridgeshire’s roads safer for all users while actively promoting greener
Cllr Ian Bates, chairman of the Cambridgeshire County
Council’s Highways and Transport Committee said: “I am delighted that the
roundabout is open. It will greatly improve safety at this busy junction, and
will hopefully encourage more people to walk and cycle to work or college. I am
particularly pleased that we have installed zebra crossings to make it easier
for vulnerable people to use the roads leading up to the new roundabout.”