Should Chevy Chase Circle Have Traffic Signals?
Would traffic signals make Chevy Chase Circle easier to navigate?
Should Chevy Chase Circle have traffic signals?
The advisory neighborhood commission of the Chevy Chase neighborhood in Washington, DC, recently voted "to send a letter to the National Park Service, which owns the circle, encouraging the agency to work with the city Transportation Department on plans to install signals," reported The Northwest Current on Wednesday, June 20 (volume XVI, No. 25, pages 1 and 13).
"Commissioners backing the letter said that it was simply a restatement of the body's 2011 vote in support of signals," The Current continued.
Navigating the circle—located on the Maryland-DC border at the intersection of Connecticut Avenue, Western Avenue, Grafton Street and Magnolia Parkway—can be a confusing experience, often accompanied by frantic lane shifting and honking from other drivers.
The circle was recently the subject of a question in Patch's weekly "Ask a Cop" feature, in which a reader wrote in to Patch asking for clarification about how to properly exit the circle.
"This circle has three lanes around it, and is stuck in the middle of Connecticut [Avenue]. So, the inside two lanes of Connecticut will probably want to enter the circle and then exit again, continuing on Connecticut (there are even white lane markers to this effect). But, sometimes a car in the outside lane will want to continue around the circle. Who has the right of way in this situation?" the reader asked.
Montgomery County Police Department Captain Paul Starks answered that "incoming traffic is supposed to yield to traffic in the circle, but if you are trying to exit a circle you should be cautious. We want people to avoid being in [a] collision. [The] outside lane should be for exiting."
What do you think? Would traffic signals make it easier to navigate around the circle? Would they just create more traffic congestion or confusion? Tell us in the comments.