Inspired by David Hembrow, I finally went and took pictures of the magically appeared roundabout in the Stevenhof neighborhood of Leiden.
The area was under annoying construction for a very long time, but before that, it was an annoying T-intersection with long traffic lights. Bicycles and cars had to wait for a green which was never fast enough. Is it ever?
Google maps out of date:
Exact location for traffic design geeks: http://maps.google.com/maps?q=haagse+schouweg,+leiden&hl=en&ll=52.15847,4.449458&spn=0.002073,0.004726&sll=52.159191,4.449677&sspn=0.007964,0.018904&vpsrc=6&z=18
The construction is now finished, revealing that they've removed all the lights and installed a roundabout!
It's lovely. Circular. Round. Wheeeeeee.
Cyclists and pedestrians now have the right of way, (indicated by the zebrapads and little triangles)
Cars or motorcycles no longer have to stop and wait for an entire light cycle. If the zebrapad and bicycle lane are clear, just keep going.
Vehicles must slow down but they keep moving with a flow which should be a relief to the red light green light system. I imagine. (I don't really know... I hate cars and even being in one makes me angry and unreasonable, lights, flow or not. Best just to tranquilize me and throw me in the back seat.)
Here's a little video: