meldy_nva(z6b VA)October 27, 2011

On my way to the store, I drive along a 4-lane avenue that has a very wide meridian, 20-storey apartment buildings on either side. Midblock there is a driveway exit from one group of buildings, bus stops on both sides of the avenue, and a crosswalk neatly painted from one side to the other side of the street. What makes this crosswalk notable is the very large curbside sign painted with the usual "caution - pedestrians" warning; but with a light bar on top (and a solar battery charger over that). Last week I happened to be driving when there was a man crossing the street. The sign was lit up with a bright pedestrian-shape walking, red lights on top flashing, and "STOP" flashing at the bottom of the sign. Attention-getting! The man reached the other side of the street, the sign turned off its warning lights and "stop" changed to "thank you".

I have never seen anything similar elsewhere.

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We could use one of those here. We have buttons to press if wanting to go across a 4 lane highway. Ok, it stops the traffic - for 25 seconds. I think besides as couple of teenagers I am the only adult who is able to cross there and I run, at least I have never seen anybody else there and ususally take my chance on the open highway, it's safer.

    Bookmark   October 27, 2011 at 8:20PM
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gandle(4 NE)

That would be one thing we would never have to worry about, we could cross any street at any point we chose at any time of the day or night. I have never heard of a pedestrian car accident in the 40+ years we have lived here.

Guess that also tells you how exciting it is in these parts.

    Bookmark   October 27, 2011 at 9:21PM
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See the below article. See the guy in the crosswalk in the picture? See the cars whizzing past anyhow? Hope it was photoshopped!

I do however, have much chagrin for those pedestrians who think that cars should stop for them, while they step out into traffic! not in a crosswalk! and not when it's their turn!!!

Here is a link that might be useful: yes, as a matter of fact we do...

    Bookmark   October 28, 2011 at 12:36PM
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I thought we had smart crosswalks here in the valley, but the one you describe is smarter than ours, and the "Thank You" is such a nice touch.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2011 at 6:45PM
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meldy, it seems that VA is on the forefront of experimenting with "smart roads".

Here is a link that might be useful: VA smart roads

    Bookmark   October 28, 2011 at 7:38PM
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Robin, I don't step out in the front of cars, that's why I seldom use the 4 street crosswalk, people who take a right hand turn there on red in the turn lane, gun the car because it goes uphill. I am short and if there is a SUV or truck on the straight lanes, nobody sees me coming. 200 yards down the highway I have in view two traffic lights. When one goes red and the last car has gone by, I have about 40 seconds to make it to the wide grassy curb- enclosed median. If the traffic on the other lane has not stopped, I just wait until the light goes red on that side and I have plenty of time to cross the other 2 lanes.
I am not suicidal nor do I expect that a car stops for me, but I know what you mean, especially since I had to drive to work at night.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2011 at 6:58PM
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My town is bisected by Highway 101, a major highway. There are three cross-walks, well marked, there are no traffic lights, two side-streets into neighborhoods, one road going to the Coast - Speed Limit in town is 35 mph.
Through travelers, I am sure, hate it.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2011 at 10:07PM
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meldy_nva(z6b VA)

I don't think this sign is part of the VA public highway system, although it's placed close to curbside so I think it would come under their aegis. The same company owns the buildings on either side; I suspect a private installation. Actually, if it IS a private sign on public land, I hope VDOT ignores it ~ my understanding is that such an installation wouldn't be allowed, no matter how practical or efficient.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2011 at 3:57PM
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It is interesting to find out about quasi public/private roads. For the past 30 years or so, "we" a group of people have been supporting building a path from the Bay to the Ocean.
DH and I have been doing our part by doing 5K walks, buying certificates for the first wild flower plantings. There are people that have worked a lot harder than us to make this happen.
Come Google, they already have a huge campus in our city, but they bought more land on the other side of the "public path" and want to expand their campus, but they want to build a "private" path , connecting to the public path, just for Google.
I'm not sure about the details, or how it will work out, but it is a gripe here in the valley.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2011 at 7:45PM
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