All images via Curious Read.
Want to find out how good or how global your Global Positioning System (GPS) really is? Make your way to any of the intersections featured here, drive on to one, and try to get out. Alone or with the help of the friendly GPS lady. Take the picture above, for example, of an elevated spiraling intersection in China. After various entry options and a two-level spiraling highway, it exits into a suspension bridge. Talk about being stuck!
Or, one could also try to memorize the outline of an intersection. But judging from these ladder-like intersections in Chicago, even that might not work.
This intersection in Tokyo looks like a symmetrical pattern but is still confusing enough for anyone driving…
No article about traffic nuisances would be complete without roundabouts. Not sure where you are going? No problem, just keep circling the roundabout until you figure it out. Or the friendly traffic policeman suggests how to make your way out. This roundabout in Swindon, UK, looks like the perfect training ground.
The Swindon design was the UK’s first “magic roundabout”. Though they are named after a popular French children’s TV series of the ‘60s, these intersections don’t seem like child’s play at all. Maybe a map will help, so here’s a drawing of the Swindon magic roundabout. Notice the shortcut and the scenic route option. Maybe the latter is for picking up passengers on the way?
There are even instructional videos on how to tackle a magic roundabout. Notice the driving school’s car at the end of the video. They must be taking one hell of a driving test.
In Russia, people seem to face similar intersection problems and have decided to go a step further. The logic is that if people spend so much time stuck at intersections, they might as well do it in style. And voila, the idea for “Galaktika” (Galaxy) was born: a giant luxury shopping complex planned to hover over Moscow’s busy Michurin and Lobachevski streets intersection by 2010. If the funds can be raised ($250-300 million), then the shopping complex would also house a luxury hotel, restaurants and parking for 2,500 cars.
For more hair-raising pictures, read Curious Read’s article on the world’s worst intersections and roundabouts.
We’ll even throw in a free album.