I'll admit I was a little giddy. On Friday I noticed traffic driving north on County Road 45 south of Cabela's. That could only mean one thing. The roundabout at 26th Street and State Avenue had opened. I hopped off the freeway and slid through the roundabout with ease. There's your 'rave review.'

A bit later on my drive to work as I sat at a red light. And sat. And sat. And still sat even as the light turned green, I chuckled and wondered, "Why do so many people not like roundabouts?" Feel free to tell me why you don't like them in the comments section on Facebook.

The decision to put a roundabout at that spot was for safety. The Minnesota Department of Transportation reports "Roundabouts show an 86-percent decrease in fatal crashes, and 83-percent decrease in life-altering injury crashes, and a 42-percent overall decrease in the injury crash rate at intersections."

They also point out that roundabouts "handle high levels of traffic with less delay than stop signs or signals," and reduce "vehicle emissions and fuel consumption" due to less idling.

Enjoy this new one, knowing another new roundabout is about to open at Bridge Street and 24th Avenue. I'm ready to give it a try too.

Roy Koenig/TSM

TRAFFIC CHANGE IN OWATONNA

Have you noticed the change on South Oak Avenue where it splits off into South Oak as you travel north near the fairgrounds? Each lane now has its own designation. Previously you could swing onto Oak from either lane with a merge point coming quickly.

Roy Koenig/TSM
Roy Koenig/TSM
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