Saturday, March 26, 2022

9 Roundabouts on Main Street in Springfield

For some that are not aware or just finding out, the city of Springfield is planning on installing 9 roundabouts (yes you heard correctly) between 42nd Street to 72nd.


"Traffic on Main Street will likely go up by 20-30% over the next 20 years and the risks from crashes will increase… unless we act now to plan changes that will save lives, reduce injuries, and lessen property damage." - Main Street Project

Do roundabouts work?

Actually yes. (Yeah, some do)

But will they work or are they even practical for Main Street?

The answer is NO!

So why 9 roundabouts on Main Street?

The claim: "• There is a serious transportation safety problem on Main Street. Springfield’s Main Street is consistently ranked as one of the most unsafe city streets in Oregon based on the severity and frequency of traffic crashes."(page 47) Springfield Main Street Facility Plan Vol. 1

"653 crashes between 2012-2016, 24 severe crashes and the loss of 6 lives… Only 3% of all crashes involve pedestrians… Intersections with the highest number of crashes, 42nd Street, Bob Straub, 58th Street, and 28th Street." - Main Street Safety Project

Roundabouts -  they're safer, they save lives, they're more efficient, better for the environment.

(Personally, I think the engineers are the same engineers that design the NASCAR raceways. "What's he going to do next? He's going to make a left turn.")

Are they really safer? Well, if you're using a computer simulation to make that determination then it might look that way. But in reality, when you are working with people… Let's just say that not everybody stops at a stop sign.

"You can't fix stupid!" – Ron White

In my opinion, depending on the intersection and the traffic congestion, I feel roundabouts are more dangerous especially when you add pedestrians and bicycles to the mix.

First, keep in mind that "technically" a roundabout is an uncontrolled intersection.

let's take Harlow Road and Pioneer Parkway during rush hour as an example. 

You have two lanes of traffic coming in from each direction. You are forced to stop before entering the roundabout and your main focus is to the left looking for a break in the traffic. Suddenly, one opens up and you prepare to enter the roundabout then out of the corner of your eye, you find that there is a pedestrian to the right of you that entered the roadway WITHOUT using the provided signal devices. (More on those signal devices later)

The car behind you, seeing that you've already started your move, has one eye on you however, their main focus is now on the roundabout and not noticing that you just slammed on your brakes.

If you think Harlow Road and Pioneer Parkway are fun, think about 42nd Street & 126th at Main street during rush hour.

"You need to pay more attention" no argument there, however, you have to take into consideration the different skill levels of drivers and that's why traffic lights are better on high-traffic multiple-lane intersections.

"Springfield’s Main Street is consistently ranked as one of the most unsafe city streets in Oregon based on the severity and frequency of traffic crashes. Over the past several years, the crash frequency on Main Street has been more than double the statewide average for urban arterial state highways. During the five-year studied period between 2012 and 2016 that was analyzed, there were 653 recorded crashes"  (page 31) Springfield Main Street plan 

"The majority of the crashes along the corridor were rear-ended or turning crashes (80%)" (Page 32)
 "79% of all crashes between 2012-2016, 305 rear end – 211 turning – 33 fixed object – 26 sideswipe – 20 pedestrian – 16 Angle – 7 backing – 6 miscellaneous – 3 Sideswipe (meeting)  (page 32)

The fixed object could be items or islands within the turning lane. Example: having to stop short to get into the turn lane to make a left turn. Or, islands that are not highly visible at night during heavy rains.

• Impairment from drugs or alcohol contributed to only five percent of overall crashes on Main Street but accounted for 12.5 percent of fatal or severe injury crashes. 
• Excessive speed and distraction contributed to approximately 10 percent of all crashes but were involved in a small proportion of fatal and severe injury crashes (less than half a percent).
 • Approximately 77 percent of crashes occurred during daylight and just 14 percent occurred in darkness. This reflects typical travel patterns throughout the day – more people are driving, biking, and walking on Main Street during daylight hours– (Page 33)

"Since 2012, the city and ODOT Installed seven enhanced pedestrian crossings with marked crosswalks and medium islands according to recommendations in 2011 Main Street's safety study. The new crosswalks have increased pedestrian access to see for crossing opportunities" – (page 38)

 "safer crossing opportunities" if used properly. However, (Speculation on my part) with the installation of these islands and the "suddenly turned on flashing yellow lights" may be a major contribution to the increase in rear-end crashes as drivers are suddenly stopping for these crosswalks.  In my opinion, that would be like going eastbound on Seventh Street and there is a pedestrian waiting at the corner to cross the street and by law, you are required to stop to allow the pedestrian to cross. However, traffic and other lanes behind you are not expecting you to stop suddenly in the center lane of a non-controlled intersection.

So be on the argument of the efficiency of roundabouts, my argument for not adding any roundabouts on Main Street is that you're going to create more problems than what you're going to try to solve. Even the data that Springfield & ODOT is claiming of why MainStreet is so dangerous does not actually address the issue.

The end result, especially during the morning and evening rush hours, you're going to be backing up traffic for blocks.
One short example would be over by Thurston high school, when the school lets out and there's a lot of foot traffic on the crosswalk behind the 7-Eleven store, traffic has been known to backup all the way on the main street and beyond Walgreens.

And yes, they want to put a roundabout there as well.

Let's talk about roundabouts.

"Roundabouts "may" improve the safety of intersections by eliminating or altering conflict types, by reducing speed differentials at intersections, and by forcing drivers to decrease speeds as they proceed into and through the intersection.... In particular, single-lane roundabouts have been found
to perform better than two-way stop-controlled (TWSC) intersections in the U.S...Although the frequency of reported crashes is not always lower at roundabouts, the reduced injury rates are usually reported... Safety is better at small and medium capacity roundabouts than at large or multilane roundabouts.." - (US Department of Transportation page 103)

The US Department of Transportation refers to these as two different types of conflicts.

 "Queuing conflicts. These conflicts are caused by a vehicle running into the back of a vehicle queue on an approach. These types of conflicts can occur at the back of a through-movement queue or where left-turning vehicles are queued waiting for gaps. These conflicts are typically the least severe of all conflicts because the collisions involve the most protected parts of the vehicle and the relative speed difference between vehicles is less than in other conflicts."
• "Merge and diverge conflicts. These conflicts are caused by the joining or separating of two traffic streams. The most common types of crashes due to merge
conflicts are sideswipes and rear-end crashes. Merge conflicts can be more severe than diverge conflicts due to the more likely possibility of collisions to the side of the vehicle, which is typically less protected than the front and rear of the vehicle." -(US Department of Transportation page 106)

. Graphical depiction of collision types at roundabouts

Conclusion – there are arguments both pro and con. For Main Street? Bad idea.
And we haven't even touched on what it's going to do to the businesses on Main Street. Some are going to lose some of their parking lots, a few others are going to lose their business altogether.

For more information...

 ODOTS TDS - crash reports start page

Friday, July 03, 2020

What is old, is new again

Robin's commentary –

It's been a long time since I posted to this blog and trust me, I miss really doing it and now in 2020  the world has literally been turned upside down, I think it's past time to start blogging again especially since we cannot rely on the traditional news sources and alternatives venues such as Facebook, YouTube and others, as they're being highly censored and preventing people from expressing their views and opinions freely.

Post something that is not politically correct or an opinion that may disagree with the accepted view, and your channel may be de-monetized or deleted.

What I'm leading up to, is a way that we blindly swallow whatever the government feeds us. Months ago, COVID-19 came into our lives and we shut down America because we did not know the dangers of the virus which actually made sense as a precaution however, we have learned a lot since then.

Despite the deaths from the virus, many businesses did not survive the shutdown and people were on edge from being locked in their homes and not knowing when or if they could go back to work.

We relied on our government, WHO, the CDC, and other "educated" officials to guide us through this pandemic. Unfortunately, as we have seen that some governors, including our own Kate Brown, has used this to seize an opportunity for control. 


Nancy Pelosi unveils 1400 page stimulus bill…(Politico) this includes rules for airlines to cut their carbon emissions by 2050, saving the Postal Service, small increase for the Pentagon, and more that really has nothing directly to do with the coronavirus.

Opinion: How can I take the virus seriously if our leaders don't?

As of July 1, 2020 governor Kate Brown ORDERED statewide the wearing of mask or face coverings in public businesses. (source) 

If too many Oregonians continue to ignore these precautions, we could see an exponential growth in cases, and newly reopened communities and businesses could close again. ..."(source)

(Masses gathering by the thousands don't count)

Obviously, businesses were already teetering on the brink of bankruptcy and permanent closure and may not survive another closure including individuals who are out of work, have not received money from unemployment, and whose savings were exhausted.

Newsflash: Governors of several states in order to force social distancing are now requiring citizens to wear a tutu when visiting public locations, violators of this new ordinance are considered a misdemeanor violation with fines up to $1000 which may include up to sixty days in jail.
Obviously, that is not yet a requirement however we have seen images where people have been wearing water weenies on their hats.

The point is that the governor or federal government could actually order this and we have no choice but to comply.

Hopefully, we are at least allowed to select our own colors.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Lane County's vehicle registration fee – crashed

Robin's commentary – Register Guard

Well despite the threats of layoffs, voters have voted 66% against the measure to enacting additional $35 registration fee in order for 40% of it to go to fixing the roads in Lane County.

According to the article, strong opposition came as residents complained that the fee was an unfair penalty on passenger car and small truck owners.

"That perception of unfairness may have tipped the scale against the fee, said Steve Candee, an Lane County College political science instructor who studies local politics... We seen in the past that people are not completely adverse to paying for services that they believe have value…"


It's not that people don't care about our roads in the community, after comments after comments after comments have shown that that for one, [especially people who have lived in the area for the last 10-15 years] that the city of Eugene and Lane County does not exactly have exemplary record of trust with the money that we've given them and we ourselves are hurting for money.

Our expenses are going up as well like increases in our utilities and other fees.

In addition, even though this is not related to this particular issue, I'm just speaking in my own opinion, on one hand when they need money, we hear them threaten fire, police and other essential services while on the other hand [perception] they always seem to come up with money for other nonessential projects such as the millions of dollars for the EmX project just to name one.

One response made by a Lane County Commissioner regarding my example using the EmX project is, [are you ready for this folks?]

"The EmX uses federal dollars!!"

Moreover, where do you think that money came from?

Anyway, I'm sure with the failure of this vehicle registration fee that they will be pushing other fees such as the State of Oregon's per mile fee, which has been approved by the way as an additional means to raise money.

And I love this comment from Lane County Commissioner Pat Farr

"Clearly, at two to one (opposed to the fee), It was something that was ill-fated. If it had been a close vote, we would have said, 'what did we do wrong?' But in a distant vote like this, it's an opportunity for or us to step back and say, 'what's wrong with this approach and how can we regroup?'"

Obviously… He just does not get it.

What are your thoughts on this?

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Hillary and Obama ticket?

Robin's commentary –

It is scary enough that Hillary Clinton has the audacity to think that she is a bona fide candidate for the presidency of course, counting on her loyalists to the Democratic Party… But this headline brought shivers to my spine.

Hillary Clinton with Barack Obama as her running mate.

{Hat tip The new Republic}

"The challenge, then, is to make sure Clinton’s age and ethnicity don’t discourage Obama’s youthful, diverse supporters from turning out in November 2016. Fortunately, there’s an easy way to make sure that doesn’t happen. Clinton simply has to select Barack Obama as her running mate."

Even if they were actually thinking about doing this, the question comes into play about whether it the Constitution would allow Obama to run as he would become successor to the presidency.

According to the article, they explain this that the Constitution says that a person cannot "run or be elected" to office however, as they point out in the case of Hillary Clinton and her husband Bill,The Constitution does not prohibit Obama from being elected to a third term.

According to Wikipedia, According to the 22nd amendment which was ratified in 1951, "no president may serve more than two terms plus a maximum of two years acceded as president under some other presidents term…"

Franklin D Roosevelt served three full terms and a brief fourth term which included two months 24 days.

I really hope that in 2016 the people wake-up and don't fall for the "Obama phone" type of rhetoric as Hillary has already started spewing that she's for family, higher wages, etc.

In my opinion, this upcoming election is more important and any other election that we've had in our recent history.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Blind leading the Blind

Robin;'s commentary--

I had a very interesting conversation today on Facebook which is kind of worries some in a lot of respects of how people just blindly follow party lines and it doesn't really matter who the candidate is, they will vote for them.

The same is true with people who still feel that Obama is the best thing since sliced bread however when asked to clarify and backup their statement… They cannot.

Take Obamacare for example.

Being somebody who actually looked at the bill, I have been saying ever since its inception about the penalties if you do not have "qualifying" healthcare you will pay a fine.

You would think that alone would get people upset. However, there was nothing but silence.

We don't think of anything like Nancy Pelosi saying, "You have to pass the bill to know what's in it…"

Now, as many tax preparers such as H&R Block are informing people how much their penalties would be if they did not have insurance, we are starting to read stories that people were unaware that there was a penalty.

As I've been saying from the onset… Wait tell 2016 when Obamacare goes into full effect and your fines will be anywhere from $2100 or 2.1% of your income.

If you don't believe me… Go read the bill.

So today, Hillary Clinton announced her candidacy for the president of the United States.

Why is this a bad idea?

The first thing that comes to mind and we can thank President Obama for sending race relations back a generation or two about racism.

While I will admit that in 2008, I was very excited about having somebody different than the old school become president, I can't help but the once bitten twice shy that if we elect our first female president that sexism will become the new racism.
Is that fair to her to think that way? No! It is not.

I for one would not have a problem with a woman president such as Sarah Palin who given the choice I would vote for over Hillary any day.

But as I said, once bitten twice shy and any woman candidate would have to come out and specify wholeheartedly that sexism is not going to be an excuse.

If there's one thing, that president Obama has shown us is just how out of control our government actually is and how they had gotten involved in issues that should not even concerned the White House.

Trey von Martin and Ferguson are two examples of local issues that never would've made national news or given much attention until the White House came out and make a big deal about it.

"If I had a son…"

An appropriate for president and the attorney general.

Yet, people still blindly support Obama and are afraid to comment against them for fear of being called a racist even though his policies are wrong and damaging.

Let me cite Obamacare again as an example.

According to the Constitution… Only Congress can enact a tax.

Originally, Obamacare had a fine. It was the courts that change that fine to a tax.

Being forced to purchase a commodity was not something that the framers of the Constitution had in mind. Moreover, where does this stop?

Bottom line folks… It's time to look beyond party lines and look at the individual.

Moreover, demand that our elected representatives follow the Constitution and not be above the law.

Saturday, April 11, 2015


I can't believe they're at it again!

How may times have we heard that they don't have the money for necessities such as road repair however they always seem to find money for other pet projects? [registerguard]

Using the latest EMX development as an example… And don't give me this that the funds are allocated for this, its city expenditures, or whatever excuse you want to give me because it still OUR money in the long run.

So, as the county claims that they are feeling their financial struggles along with the rest of us, they feel that once again that were wealthy enough that we can afford an extra $35 a year to register our vehicles.

Of course the question is… Is that on top of the already in my opinion outrageous registration fee?

Of course Lane County says that the money will be earmarked basically to repair roads and bridges and not to go towards new roads however, the other 12 cities located within Lane County would be able to split 40% of the revenue without such restrictions.

The Lane commissioners agreed to defer their decision to the May ballot and you can let the commissioners knowing the meantime if you are for or against it by going to the "engage Lane" website

I am very interested in how you feel about this as well.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

doing a reboot [again]

There is a lot going on in the news both locally and nationally and I've been biting at the bit to comment on it however, time is always been an issue.

That would change is coming on, including changes with the Internet radio station, KRBN, should soon be getting back into the saddle.

So stay tuned, keep checking back, new stuff coming… I promise.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Bringing Back the Blog

Wow, it has been a while since I have done any blogging and believe me, with everything going on in the world and locally and as usual I have a lot to say about it unfortunately, time restraints have prevented me from properly maintaining this blog.

Times have changed and jobs have changed but things are getting better where my goal is to get all the little stuff wrapped up and to start anew in 2015.

In the meantime, I will be doing some posts on here as events occur and more heavily next year.

So please add this site to your bookmarks as I look forward to once again doing commentaries and reading your views as well.

See you soon.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

another US invasion?

Robin's commentary --

According to the dictionary, an invasion in which large parts of armed forces of one geopolitical entity aggressively in terms of territory controlled by another  generally with the objective of either conquering or reestablishing control or authority over territory forcing the partition of the country, altering the establishment government or gaining concessions of said government.

now admittedly a mob of 150 alone may in itself not construed as an invasion from another country however, this is just only one instance and they are anticipating more occurrences such as this one on Sunday as there is more talks of immigration reform.

hat tip 

Friday, November 15, 2013

articles of impeachment to be introduced...

Robin's commentary --

Politico --

When I saw the headlines about impeachment, I got excited thinking that the Republicans are finally going to follow through as threatened to impeach Obama.

Well according to political and other replicable news services such as Reuters, yes, papers of impeachment are going to be filed...

On Attorney General Eric Holder.



I'm confused!

One of the reasons that is cited for the House of Representatives plan to introduce articles of impeachment against Eric Holder is because they said that he lied to Congress as well as fail to uphold federal law.

Are we sure were not talk about Obama?

Texas representative Pete Olson who drafted the articles said, "this is not a decision that I made lightly.  Since the House voted in 2012 to hold Eric Holder in contempt, that pattern of disregard for the rule of law and refusal to be forthright has only continued."

Are you sure were not talk about Obama?

"The American people deserve answers and accountability" said Olson

uh... again... Obama?

Reasons outlined are  "Operation Fast and Furious", Holders decision not to enforce laws on same-sex marriage, on prison sentences for certain drugs crimes and lying to Congress about a Justice Department investigation onto Fox news correspondent James Rosen.

But, what about Obama?

Obama, openly admitting that the Constitution gets in his way and if Congress won't act he will.

Failing to negotiate on Obamacare has devastated thousands of Americans placing some in life's jeopardy because of his failed promise that "if you like your insurance... you can keep it."

And how the "big mouth in the White House" has dramatically ruined several people's lives by commenting on a local crime which was totally inappropriate and I'm referring to the Zimmerman case.

and I could fill up several pages of examples of where he broke the law, violated the Constitution, etc.

But then I see this video as Oprah Winfrey in an interview with the BBC clears it all up for me and explains that Americans are all just racist and that's why we're constantly picking on the president.

Silly me...

yes, a whole bunch of racist Americans elected Obama twice.

I guess we better turn our attention from Obama to Eric Holder as we should all be ashamed for putting down our president.




Insert MC Hammer song, "can't touch that"