A52 - A61

Pentagon Roundabout

Where is it?

Just east of Derby city centre, where part of the fragmentary outer ring road meets the main radial in from the east, which connects to Derby's closest neighbour, Nottingham.

It was spotted by Alistair Beaton.

What's wrong with it?

Well, it's quite clearly half a job. Despite the direction the green primary route takes, the major traffic flow here is along the A52 — carrying traffic in and out of Derby from the east, where there are good links to Nottingham and the M1. But while the eastbound side has been endowed with a two-lane flyover, allowing a speedy exit from Derby, nobody has ever seen fit to provide the same for westbound traffic. Derby is therefore very simple to leave but not so easy to enter.

Why is it wrong?

Aside from the A52, the main contributor of traffic to the roundabout is the A61. Given that this lies on the north side of the junction, we can guess that it wasn't considered necessary for the westbound side to bypass the roundabout as the south side would be quieter. Quite logical really

Well, so much for logic. The roundabout is busier than all that — much busier. And how do we tell? Why, Derby City Council have kindly filled the junction with a large number of cheery red, amber and green lights, so even the uninitiated can tell that it's a busy place. How kind.

What would be better?

A westbound flyover is the obvious answer but I doubt one is on the cards. You could experiment by converting the flyover to a two-way single carriageway, or even better use it for a tidal flow system, westbound in the morning peak and eastbound in the evening.


Right to reply

Rob Webster 16 August 2006

Horrendous junction! It's far quicker to avoid the A52 for its last couple of miles heading into Derby from Nottingham through Pride Park - it involves a trip through a retail park but is far quicker - the local buses have started using the route instead. Going the other way though, the flyover is a fantastic relief after the city centre queues - round a 270-degree bend and then flat out at 70.

Mark Johnson 23 September 2007

Pride Park has improved things enormously, especially if you're going to the south of the city centre. But Eastgate isn't all that. If you're coming from the north-west, or planning to go along Nottingham Road or the A61, you'll be doing some hair-raising weaving along Eastgate.

John Morgan 15 February 2009

Re your comment:
"...allowing a speedy exit from Derby, nobody has ever seen fit to provide the same for westbound traffic. Derby is therefore very simple to leave but not so easy to enter."

If the junction has been designed thus, presumably with large input from the City Council, doesn't that say something about Derby? Even the Council want to make it easier to leave than to enter!

(By the way, I now live near Nottingham.)

Brian Lace 15 February 2009

You've missed the best part, which is just to the west of Pentagon (the Eastgate A52 approach). The 270-degree loop slip coming north out of Derby deposits the now-dizzy driver onto the right hand lane pair of Eastgate - traffic wanting to head A61 north or into Chaddesden have to cross two lanes of A52 traffic (who, if they want to stay on the A52 eastbound, have to get over onto the right-hand lanes). Fun and games are had by all.

Jon 5 September 2011

I don't see the issue personally. There is a short delay westbound but nothing too serious, and I bet if it was built today it wouldn't be grade separated at all!

Chris 18 February 2017

The council is currently proposing improvements, mainly I think to improve the flow between the A61 and the A52, the green and main flow.

They are proposing a double hamburger roundabout .... but what exactly is one of these?

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