Sunday, July 21, 2013

Improved crosswalk installed on Stockton!

by Michelle Stenzel

Have you noticed the upgraded crosswalk on Stockton Drive at Belden? It's between the Shakespeare statue and the Lincoln Park Conservatory. This is a very busy crossing for joggers, walkers, guests of the Belden-Stratford Hotel, visitors to the zoo, and many others.
The improved crosswalk on Stockton Drive at Belden. (Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
Do you remember what it looked like before? Here's a picture to remind you of its sorry original state:
This "Before" pic shows that the marked crosswalk was very wide, and nearly invisible.
(Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
The improvements include re-painting of the "zebra-style crosswalk markings, of course. However, what makes the most difference is the wide curb bump-outs that narrow the distance that pedestrians are in the roadway.  (More -->)

The new curbs are painted bright yellow. (Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
The bump outs extend more than 8 feet on both sides, so the total crossing distance has been narrowed by more than 16 feet. This means that I only had to take 11 steps from sidewalk edge to sidewalk edge, instead of 19 steps.

The new crosswalk is much shorter than before. (Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
The view of the narrowed street, crosswalk markings and the bright yellow curb color all help drivers to slow down when approaching the area, and to stop for people entering the crossing.

This is especially important for drivers who come over a small hill from the south. Previously, it was all but impossible to tell there was a crosswalk here:

Before: Drivers cresting the hill couldn't even tell there was a crosswalk here.
Here's the new view that drivers see of the crosswalk:
That's much better!
These crosswalk improvements were much needed and much appreciated! Alderman Michele Smith and her staff worked with CDOT to bring this to us -- thank you all!

And for something to look forward to, we hear that another major improvement on its way this season is a pedestrian refuge island on Clark Street at Menomonee! This is another much-needed safety improvement that will benefit Green City Market shoppers and many others living in and passing through that area.
A pedestrian crosses Clark Street at Menomonee, where a refuge island is planned. (Photo: Bike Walk Lincoln Park)
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