Carmel Roundabouts Have Curb Appeal, Engineers Say

Officials: Carmel Touted As Unofficial U.S. Roundabout Capital

Hundreds of people were in Carmel on Wednesday for a conference on roundabouts.

Carmel has about 65 of the circular traffic junctions, which may be the reason many consider Carmel the unofficial roundabout capital of the U.S., 6News' Myrt Price reported.

Conference participants said they hoped to learn more on why Carmel is setting the curb in the transportation industry.

"I think roundabouts are the greatest intersection traffic control that's ever come along," said Gene Russell with the transportation research board.

For that reason, Russell and hundreds of others who attended the conference said Carmel is a model city for the traffic control mechanism.

Carmel city engineer Michael McBride agreed.

"The greatest benefit is safety," McBride said. "We've seen a 50 percent city wide reduction in injury accidents."

Russel said the roundabouts force drivers to slow down, which leads to less severe accidents.

"If there is a crash, then it's usually a side-swipe fender bender," Russell said.

Roundabouts are also credited with improving traffic flow, engineers said.

During the conference, there were dozens of seminars which covered various roundabouts topics.

"(We discussed) everything from design, to pedestrian issues and community issues, bicycle issues, community issues and how do you sell roundabouts," Russell said.

Along with the sessions, participants also got a chance to check out Carmel's roundabouts.

Paul Mackey, a participant from Canada, said he was impressed.

"I think it's a good example here. I think more cities should have to invest more in roundabout construction," Mackey said.

Participants said they hope to take what they learned in Carmel back to their respective cities.