Days after the city carried out its plan to take out the Avalon crosswalk by Java Bean and Luna Park Cafe, it’s also finally answered a couple of tough questions posed by a concerned citizen.
First time this citizen wrote to the address the city offers for comments/questions, WalkAndBike@seattle.gov, he got what sounded like a standardized reply. So he tried again. That exchange, after the jump:
The citizen wrote:
Unfortunately, I don’t feel like you’re showing much appreciation for
my concern when you respond to my public comment with a canned response that simply informs me of what I stated below that I already have read and understand and doesn’t manage to respond to any of the questions that I raised…
So, let me try something different.
1) What would it cost to add a signal to this crosswalk?
2) Would a traffic signal just a few feet to the north help with TRAFFIC safety as cars merge onto Avalon Way from Admiral Way up above, which has limited sight towards the cars speeding from the bridge up Avalon Way?
The city replied:
The cost of a traffic signal varies greatly depending on the location.
In this particular situation, it is not cost that is an issue, but the
fact that a traffic signal is not warranted at this location.
You might be interested to know how a signal request is evaluated.
Consistent with U.S. Code Title 23 of the Federal Government, traffic
engineers determine whether or not the location meets the established
criteria for the installation of a signal based upon a number of
characteristics. Essentially, the characteristics of the study include
the physical features of the particular location, collision records,
gaps in traffic, volumes of vehicles and pedestrians, as well as the
proximity of other traffic signals. Installing a signal where one is not
warranted can, in fact, be a detriment to efficient movement in an
intersection, causing congestion and unnecessary delays as well as the
potential for an increase in rear-end accidents. An unwarranted signal
can also have the adverse effect of increasing cut-through traffic into
a local neighborhood.
I regret that neither the intersection of SW Avalon Wy & SW Orleans St
nor the intersection to the North does not meet the federal criteria for
a traffic signal to be considered.
I recognize that these removals, while important from a safety
perspective, do not promote walking or increase pedestrian mobility.
However, this is not the only work that SDOT is making to improve the
pedestrian environment. In the last four years, over fifty new marked
crosswalks have been installed at locations where we do want to
encourage pedestrian traffic. In addition, at least five new pedestrian
signals are installed each year to improve crossings at locations where
we cannot recommend a marked crosswalk alone.
If you still have something to say about this, click here for the city e-mailbox.
| 24 COMMENTS