Evaluation of an alternative pedestrian treatment at a roundabout
Roundabouts are renowned to be one of the safest treatments at intersections. However, a common criticism of roundabouts is that they do not cater well for pedestrians. The City of Port Phillip in Melbourne, Victoria, constructed an innovative treatment at a busy suburban roundabout designed to provide greater safety and convenience for pedestrians. The design provides right-of-way for pedestrians directly at the intersection as opposed to standard roundabout design. A before-and-after study was undertaken to evaluate the success of this design in terms of pedestrian safety and convenience. Vehicle speed was measured at locations indicative of pedestrian crash and injury risk, and pedestrian convenience was measured through changes in total crossing time. Pedestrian compliance was also measured as an indicator of both safety and convenience. Video footage of the site was captured to further establish treatment effects. Finally, surveys were conducted to assess change in pedestrian perceptions of the roundabout. The results indicated a general decrease in mean vehicle speed, greater pedestrian compliance with the crossings, and reduced waiting time for pedestrians, suggesting greater convenience and safety with the new treatment. The surveys of pedestrians reflected these findings, responses being generally positive towards the treatment. Effects on all roadusers need to be determined for future work.