The recent 3D fly-by video of the Regina Bypass released by the Saskatchewan government is uncovering more traffic features included as part of the mega-project.
The video reveals a set of two roundabouts at the Trans-Canada and Highway 46 near Balgonie.
Doug Wakabayashi with the Ministry of Highways said one of the roundabouts is approved. The second is being looked into and could also potentially be approved by the ministry. If that happens, he said it would not increase the overall $1.88 billion price tag of the bypass.
He maintains that traffic engineers refer to them as modern roundabouts, ones that are much more efficient than some past incarnations of traffic circles.
“It improves the flow. It also improves safety because there’s less potential for side-swipe collisions and right-angle collisions as well from people turning left across traffic,” Wakabayashi explained.
The video also reveals what are called Diverging Diamond Interchanges (DDIs). The concept is a unique way of addressing left-hand turns, Wakabayashi said.
An overpass will have lights at both ends of the bridge. At the lights traffic crosses over from the right-hand lane to the left-hand lane. Vehicles wanting to turn left merge while those wishing to continue on the route simply transitions back to the right-hand side of the road. The Ministry of Highways provided this video to describe the concept.
Wakabayshi said the concept is still relatively new in North America, with roughly 60 DDIs either in operation or planned since 2009, most of which are in the United States. He believes the DDIs involved in the bypass project would be among the first in Canada.