How are Crosswalk Locations Determined?

At signalized intersections that are City-maintained, there are typically pedestrian signals and marked crosswalks indicating when and where to cross the street. At signals or at STOP controlled intersections, motorists are required to yield to pedestrians, whether a crosswalk is painted on the pavement or not.

The best place to cross is at intersections.

Potential mid-block crosswalk locations must be very carefully studied to make sure the benefits outweigh potential risks. In-between intersections, vehicular speeds are higher and generally drivers do not expect pedestrians to cross the road. Further, studies have shown that crosswalks can give a "false sense of security" to many pedestrians and especially children are often less careful when crossing in a crosswalk. In an effort to outweigh the possible risks of a mid-block crosswalks on a low-speed street, a high number of pedestrians crossing the street is required for consideration (typically at least 15 per hour throughout most of the day – with the exception of schools, only 2 hours of increased pedestrian activity may suffice). This is for the pedestrian's safety! Studies have shown that driver compliance is low for crosswalks that are not regularly utilized by pedestrians. Another factor that weighs in is the amount of “Average Daily Traffic” that the street experiences. For a basic crosswalk (markings and signs), the traffic volumes ought to be between 3,000 vehicles per 24 hours but no more than 15,000 per 24 hours. If higher than 15,000 vehicles per day, or the roadway has more than two lanes or a higher speed limit, engineering judgement is utmost important: Additional crossing protection may be considered – or crossing may be discouraged altogether. 

To request a crosswalk study, please submit a service request or call the citizen resource center at 417-864 1010.