Carmel wins bid to host 2011 National Roundabout Conference
Carmel, IN – City Engineer, Mike McBride, was able to report to Mayor Jim Brainard today that the City of Carmel won the bid to host the 2011 Transportation Research Board’s (TRB) National Roundabout Conference. McBride has been in Washington D.C this week to attend this group’s annual conference and Roundabout Task Force meeting. He presented his proposal to about 20 Task Force members and approximately 50 other attendees. The other finalist that Carmel was competing against for this conference was Seattle, Washington.
“We are very pleased to be able to share with this national group the successes we have had with our roundabout intersections. By 2011, we will have more than 60 roundabouts throughout the city. In addition, we will have some good data about the success of our roundabout interchanges along Keystone Avenue. We have already seen about an 18 percent decrease in the number of accidents along Keystone in 2008 compared to 2007 and the two intersections under construction have only been closed for seven months,” said Mayor Jim Brainard.
“As a part of our presentation to the Task Force, we were asked to share how many roundabouts were within the community and near the proposed conference venue. When I got to that section of my presentation and told the group that by 2011, there would be more than 60 roundabouts within five miles of Carmel’s Renaissance Hotel, a gasp went up from the audience. They were impressed with the sheer number and density of roundabouts in our community. Conference attendees really want to see actual roundabouts in operation and Carmel offers the opportunity to see a large number of roundabouts in a short distance,” said City Engineer McBride.
McBride said that another component that appealed to the TRB Task Force was the fact that Indiana’s Purdue-based Local Technical Assistance Program (LTAP) will partner with Carmel in hosting the conference. This group brings with it a high level of expertise in large conference planning and the connection to Purdue’s extensive technical expertise.
The mission of the TRB is to provide leadership in transportation innovation and progress through research and information exchange. The TRB includes members from various nations including the Netherlands, Australia, Great Britain and France. The TRB conference that Carmel will host at the Renaissance Hotel in 2011 will draw about 500-600 attendees from all over the world. The economic impact of hosting this conference to the local community will be close to a quarter of a million dollars.