Question:

Please can you define the diference between a mini circle and a standard roundabout in the Pretoria area in Gauteng?
Is it in the diameter only or any other method?
If so please could you give me the diameters of both mini and standard.
Are there any other ways to define the difference between the standard and mini?
Can a mini roundabout be surrounded by a raised kerb and island or is it just a slight rise in the middle of the road painted yellow and white?

Please advise as we have a problem in Pretoria with a public road within a housing estate and need to clarify the differences so that everyone will obey the rules of the road when it comes to yielding at the present traffic circles.

Answer: 

The one basic difference between a mini traffic circle and a roundabout is that a mini circle must be mountable to allow, more specifically, heavy vehicles to drive over the circle.

The diameter of such a mini circle is normally not more than 7 to 10 meters and not less than 3 meters and is normally constructed from asphalt.

A roundabout is a circle which is constructed from figure 8 and figure 7 kerbs and is paved with interlocking 80mm bricks. The minimum diameter for a roundabout is 16 meters. The roundabout also have a 1.5 to 2 meter apron to allow heave vehicles to drive onto a small section of the circle. The figure 8 kerbs allows for the vehicle to mount and the figure 7 kerb prevent that the vehicle drive over the centre part of the circle island.

Landscaping are allowed at roundabouts, between the figure 7 kerbs.

The mini circle will also have yellow arrows painted to indicate the direction of travel around the circle while the roundabout does not have any painted arrows.

Normally the approach splitter islands at a mini circle are painted, but there are cases where we have constructed the splitter islands with figure 8 kerbs.

The approach splitter islands at a roundabout are as a rule constructed with figure 7 kerbs.

The mountable slopes of a mini circle is painted white and black – not yellow and white.

The approaches at both the mini circle and the roundabout is yield controlled.

I trust this explanation between the mini circle and the roundabout provide the necessary clarity.

You are also welcome to arrange a site meeting. This will allow me to have a better understanding of the onsite scenario

Best regards

Frank Lambert
Functional Head: Traffic Engineering and Operations

Also view:

Traffic Calming, Speed Calming and Road Safety

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