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Santa Ana is Having a Roundabout Renaissance

State Active Transportation Program funds were used to build this and eight other roundabouts this past year in Santa Ana. The roundabout shown is in a residential neighborhood in West Santa Ana and includes new signs and bulbouts at each street corner. Photo by Kristopher Fortin

The City of Santa Ana public works department has been busy this first half of the year installing street improvements on the city's west side. Between March until roughly last month, nine roundabouts were installed along three street corridors.

Roundabouts have been popping up throughout the city for a few years. A few temporary roundabouts were installed in Santa Ana's Southside, and last year the city's downtown got its first one at Third and Bush Streets. A few months ago, they started making their way west into neighborhood streets.

The roundabouts and accompanying improvements like bulbouts and bioswales are one of the most recent examples of the ongoing culture change in Santa Ana.

Bioswales were installed on West Bishop St. The landscaping pinches the roadway, making it narrower with the aim of slowing down traffic.

The newly installed roundabouts can be found at South Pacific Avenue and Shelton Street between West First Street and McFadden Avenue, and West Bishop/Willits between South Raitt and Flower Streets.

Roughly $1 million was awarded through the state's Active Transportation Program to design and install these street improvements, said Cory Wilkerson, the city's active transportation coordinator.

The funding was also used to install bioswales on West Bishop Street. The landscaping has two functions: to collect surface runoff and remove pollutants from it, and, by narrowing the roadway, to encourage drivers to slow down.

The city hasn't been waiting around for outside funding to come to make improvements. In Santa Ana's Southside, the Public Works Agency has been responding to concerns about traffic safety, and using what materials they have on hand to create temporary solutions. On Orange and Occidental, temporary delineators and street markings were used to create a roundabout.

Take a look at other roundabouts in the area:

The roundabout at Occidental and Orange in Santa Ana used temporary, inexpensive materials to slow traffic. Kristopher Fortin/ California Streetsblog
A roundabout at English and 15th Streets. This roundabout was installed through the Public Works Agency's neighborhood engagement team, within the traffic engineering division. The team's role is to respond to community concerns or requests for changes on neighborhood streets, such as striping crosswalks.
Roundabout at the intersection of South Pacific Ave and West Willits Street. Each corner also got a bulb-out, shortening the crossing distance for people walking. Kristopher Fortin/StreetsblogCA
A roundabout at West Bishop and South Baker Streets. Kristopher Fortin/StreetsblogCA

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