I apologise for disappearing from this blog for a quite a while. Well, the reason is that I have been doing some roundabout in my life, literally. ;)
You see, YG wrote about what could possibly be the smallest roundabout in Singapore here. While I do not dispute his claim, I think I could have found the smallest roundabout in the world:
The above photo was taken when I was holidaying in Taiwan in November last year. It shows the entrance to a carpark near Pacific Sogo in downtown Taipei where land price is at a premium. Hence the approach road and the entrance to this car park is exceptionally narrow. They are so narrow that there is not enough space for a car to turn right normally into the carpark. So how did they manage to solve the problem? By using a powered roundabout or rather, I should say a turntable. The driver manoeuvres the car onto it; the operator presses a button to rotate it slowly 90 degrees to the right and voila, the car is facing the entrance directly within a few seconds. When the car exits the carpark, the process is reversed, with the turntable turning in the opposite direction.
Well okay, I admit that the yellow circle appears bigger than the roundabout in YG's article but if you could imagine and compare the turning motions of the cars in the 2 circles, you will realise that the car in my example is actually turning on its own axis, i.e. it is turning in a much tighter circle. So could this be the smallest roundabout in the world?
Note: I think that the man in the photo is the carpark operator. The driver is seated in the car on the lefthand side as cars in Taipei are lefthand-drive.
Outramian Sunny Sng Tiang Kee
4 hours ago