Crosswalk Ordinance? What Crosswalk Ordinance?
Last year, Ann Arbor passed a crosswalk ordinance that become the model Traverse City used for its recent crosswalk ordinance (TC’s Uniform Traffic Code Section 410.03). It requires all vehicles (including bicycles) to stop for pedestrians in unregulated crosswalks that are marked and posted.
If you haven’t noticed, it is in effect. Any reports from the streets?
Front side of a postcard campaign by Washtenaw Bicycling and Walking Coalition
Driver Behavior Remains the Issue
Ann Arbor has had issues with compliance of their law as the privilege associated with driving a car is difficult to change. People behind the wheel are still not readily stopping and there has been an uptick with fender-bender rear ends when someone stops too quickly. Ann Arbor is attempting to improve that with stricter enforcement, enhanced warning systems and perhaps with a slight clarifying of the ordinance language to clarify that a stop is only required if “a pedestrian is stopped at the curb or ramp leading to a crosswalk.” It avoids the vague term of “when approaching” a crosswalk.
Still, authorities in Ann Arbor are discovering that the biggest obstacle to compliance has nothing to do with the ordinance or pedestrians; the biggest issue remains driver behavior. Namely, distracted driving and driving too fast. There is state law to help reduce the former and the latter requires that the city focus on design of the streets to restrict speeds, but also to protect pedestrians with greater use of bump-outs, medians and narrow streets. It appears from the comments by council members, that Ann Arbor’s council is supporting continued improvement in street design guidelines to achieve those ends. Ann Arbor is also attempting to raise the awareness of the ordinance through postcard and ad campaigns, as well as continuing to provide video footage of the experience on the street.
Want to Help
Forces are coming together in Traverse City to begin a PR campaign for our new ordinance, both through the City Planning office and through citizen effort. If you’re interested in lending a talent, an idea or being filmed as you navigate the streets, you can send me a message or contact the planning department to be plugged in. TC resident Marya Tyler is also interested in putting together some short PR videos that will air online and public access. If interested, email at: email@example.com
The following video was effective in helping to get A2’s ordinance passed. (If you need a bit of a pick-me-up in your attitude before your daily walk commute, watch this video).
“We can have a community where we no longer feel invisible as pedestrians– where motorists stop to allow children to cross the street.”
- Go Team! Policy Changes Need Love Too
- A Stop at Crosswalk Ordinance is Only One Needed Treatment
- Word of the Day: Crosswalk Creeping
- City May Pass Ordinance Requiring Stops at Crosswalks