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Bringing attention back to pedestrians
Intersections account for the most serious conflicts between pedestrians, cyclists, and drivers, but also present opportunities to reduce crashes when designed smartly. Intersections are a critical part of the streetscape. Compact intersections, also called neckdowns, reduce pedestrian exposure, slow traffic near conflict points, and increase visibility for all users.
Additionally, compact intersections offer drivers who need to cross an intersection a much better view of other vehicles - a common problem for those who have to cross Stephen Street. This also adds to driver safety downtown.
This topic makes everybody's eyes roll - but this will be the only solution to people not parking too close to intersections. Only a physical barrier will solve this issue.
Ah, those Europeans... taking this a step further, here you can see a raised neckdown intersection, which adds an additional physical speed barrier by raising the intersection road part up to pedestrian level. This concept is commonly used in pedestrian heavy zones, from small towns to big cities in Europe. It is not a concept I would support in our climate, but it is the change of mindset that I appreciate here: instead of pedestrians entering vehicle traffic space when crossing over, vehicle traffic enters a pedestrian space to cross.
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