The intersection of Saddle Club Road and Royal Palm Boulevard/Glades Parkway is one of the busiest in Weston. Thousands of vehicles pass through it each day traveling to and from Weston Regional Park, the Weston Community Center and Weston YMCA Family Center. A new left turn signal is easing congestion and making the streets safer.
Assistant City Manager/COO Karl Thompson has requested a traffic study for the past eight years. In June, the Broward County Traffic Engineering Division determined traffic counts and other factors finally met the criteria needed. It authorized the installation of protected left turn signals from eastbound and westbound Saddle Club Road onto Royal Palm Boulevard/Glades Parkway.
Director of Communications Denise Barrett-Miller explains what warranted the decision to install protected left turn signals. “It is a combination of traffic volume, accidents and what traffic engineers call a failed cycle, which is when at least one queued left-turning vehicle cannot complete the maneuver in a single full cycle of the light.”
The new turn signals should help with the flow of traffic and reduce the number of accidents at the intersection. As part of its traffic study, the Broward County Traffic Engineering Division looked at crash reports from the Broward Sheriff’s Office and found three peak-hour correctible crashes occurred in that intersection during a 30-month period. The protected left turn signal should prevent future crashes.
“A protected left turn is generally considered to enhance the safety of turning vehicles,” explains Barrett-Miller. “The green arrow pointing left allows you to make a protected turn; oncoming vehicles, bicycles and pedestrians are stopped by a red light as long as the green arrow is lit. So, as long as vehicles adhere to the lights, the turning vehicles are protected.”
While traffic signals can help control the flow of vehicles, Barrett-Miller says nothing replaces common sense and proper driving techniques. “Remember the basics: use turn signals, don’t follow closely, observe speed limits and stop signs, and don’t text and drive. These basics make a huge difference and save a lot of headaches, costly tickets and accidents.”
In addition, Weston utilizes roundabouts, also known as traffic circles, to help control traffic flow through intersections. There are two roundabouts along Bonaventure Boulevard and one at the entrance to Weston Regional Park. Here are some helpful tips on how to safely navigate a roundabout:
Slow down as you approach the roundabout and watch for pedestrians in the crosswalk.
Continue toward the roundabout and look to your left as you near the yield sign at the entrance to the roundabout. You must yield to traffic already in the roundabout.
Once you see a gap in traffic, enter the circle and proceed to your exit. If there is no traffic in the roundabout, you may enter without yielding.
Look for pedestrians and use your turn signal before you exit the roundabout.