Roundabout in the works for Hwy. 7 between Winsted and Lester Prairie

WINSTED, LESTER PRAIRIE, MN – Planning to improve safety on Highway 7 and McLeod County Rd. 1 between Winsted and Lester Prairie is underway, according to Mandi Lighthizer-Schmidt, director of public engagement, MnDOT District 8

Thist is a joint project between MnDOT and McLeod County.  Both groups worked together to submit the project for funding with federal safety dollars, and they have been notified that those safety funds were awarded for this project.  ”This intersection has been the site of a number of crashes, with some that resulted in serious injuries.   Over a five year period between 2013 and 2017, there were 18 crashes at the intersection which is more than what would be expected at this type of rural intersection,”  Lighthizer-Schmidt stated.

Roundabouts show an 86 percent decrease in fatal crashes, an 83 percent decrease in life-altering injury crashes, and a 42 percent overall decrease in the injury crash rate at intersections.

“Design for the roundabout at County Road 1 is just getting started, so we don’t yet know the exact size and configuration of the design, but expect it will generally look and work the same as the other roundabouts on Highway 7.  It will be a single lane roundabout.  As part of the design process, we review the types and size of vehicles that use the intersection and design it so that the roundabout can accommodate those vehicles.   We know there are larger trucks that use County Road 1 going to and from Lester Prairie, Winsted and beyond.  We also evaluate past permits that have been issued for oversize vehicles that have traveled on Highway 7 to inform our design of the roundabout.

“After we work this summer on the preliminary design, our current plan is to bring information to the public,” she noted.

Watch future editions of Herald Journal for more information as this project develops.







  1. Jennie says:


  2. Scott Batson says:

    People using the road make mistakes (like running stop signs and red lights), always have and always will. Crashes will always be with us, but they need not result in fatalities or serious injury.

    Modern roundabouts are the safest form of intersection in the world – the intersection type with the lowest risk of fatal or serious injury crashes – (much more so than comparable signals). Modern roundabouts require a change in speed and alter the geometry of one of the most dangerous parts of the system – intersections.

    The reduction in speed to about 20 mph and sideswipe geometry mean that, when a crash does happen at a modern roundabout, you might need a tow truck, but rarely an ambulance. Visit the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety for modern roundabout FAQs and safety facts.

    Modern Roundabouts are one of several proven road safety features (FHWA).
    The life saved may be your own.
    Cheddar video:
    Carmel, IN:
    Early minor crashes decrease over time:
    Glastonbury, CT:
    Butler County, OH:

    Modern, slow and go, roundabout intersections have less daily delay than a stop light or stop sign, especially the other 20 hours a day people aren’t driving to or from work (it’s the #2 reason they’re built). Signals take an hour of demand and restrict it to a half hour, at best only half the traffic gets to go at any one time. ‘At best’ because traffic signals must have the yellow and all red portion (6+ seconds per cycle) for safety, and modern roundabouts do not. At a modern roundabout, drivers entering from different directions can all enter at the same time. Don’t try that with a signalized intersection.

  3. Dana Laurie says: