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Letter: Rawlins Cross roundabout is ill-thought-out

The City of St. John's is changing traffic circulation at Rawlins Cross on a trial basis this summer. Before the changes are put in place — at a date yet to be announced — an information session for the public is planned for July 25 at the Bannerman Park Pool House. — Screen shot from City of St. John's YouTube video
The City of St. John’s has changed traffic circulation at Rawlins Cross as a pilot project. — Screen shot from City of St. John’s YouTube video

My wife and I just returned from a drive. We decided to see how the Rawlins Cross roundabout was laid out and appraise its functioning.

One word: awful.

There are delays from Rennies Mill Road through the intersection onto Monkstown Road to get through the intersection of Military Road down to Prescott Street. The reason for the delays: no light to slow down the traffic turning right from Military Road onto Monkstown Road and from the Cross through that intersection onto Monkstown Road across Military Road. If the explanation sounds confusing, the actuality is worse.

Then, going down Prescott Street, I noticed that going up Prescott Street to enter the Cross, traffic is now supposed to yield! Imagine having to yield during a winter storm. My God, where is the thought process in making that decision?

The way the Cross used to work, traffic coming up Prescott Street had the right-of-way and all other traffic had to yield to them. That makes perfect sense since that is one steep hill for cars, trucks, buses and motorcycles to climb. During the winter when it’s slippery, having to slow down can be a problem getting over the hump at the top of the hill.

Carol and I agree with former mayor Shannie Duff: leave that intersection, as difficult as it is, alone. Remember the adage, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

Carol and John Reade
St. John’s

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