A £2.3m roundabout that prioritises cyclists and pedestrians over motorists has been forced to close for three nights after a car crashed – the day before its opening ceremony.
There have been concerns that some motorists wouldn’t understand how the Dutch-style roundabout works, but Cambridgeshire Council has insisted its design played no part in the crash.
A driver collided with a Belisha beacon next to one of the roundabout’s zebra crossings on 30 July – and it has now been closed for three nights so necessary repairs can be carried out.
The roundabout is designed so motorists give way to pedestrians and cyclists when joining and leaving the roundabout. There are also zebra crossings over each approach road for pedestrians.
The scheme was originally estimated to cost £800,000, but the bill almost trebled because of additional utility work and coronavirus-related complications.
In a statement, Cambridgeshire County Council said: “This accident happened 12 days ago, before the roundabout opened and when it was still operating under temporary traffic lights.
“A car collided with a Belisha beacon column, causing it to lean slightly.
“The driver failed to stop at the scene.
“While the Belisha beacon is still working properly, the night-time closures are to assess the damage and carry out the necessary repairs.
“There have been no accidents at the new roundabout since it opened on 31 July.
“The first of the night-time closures was on Monday and we expect the work to be completed on Wednesday.
“The design of the roundabout played no part in the accident.”
RAC head of roads policy Nicholas Lyes said the roundabout “may well be an unusual junction to navigate in the first instance”.
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