Illinois law requires drivers to stop when pedestrians are present in a striped crosswalk, even in the absence of a stop sign or traffic signal. As a gentle reminder that it’s not OK to mow down people as they attempt to cross the street, signage has popped up across the city, including locations in the 47th Ward.
According to Gabe Klein, commissioner of the Chicago Department of Transportation, 3,000 man vs. machine collisions occur in Chicago each year, resulting in an average of 50 deaths. The “bright, in your face” signage is one of about 20 “traffic calming” measures the city plans to deploy to increase pedestrian safety, particularly that of children, the elderly and disabled.
In the 47th Ward, signs have been installed at the intersections of Addison and
Hamilton Hermitage, Addison and Hoyne, and, most visibly, Lincoln and Leland. Look for additional signs at Lawrence and Washtenaw, Wilson and Virginia, Lincoln and Hutchinson, and Lincoln and Berenice. Locations were chosen based on calls and emails to the ward office coupled with traffic data.
Email questions about the signs or suggestions for locations to Bill Higgins, program analyst and coordinator for the 47th Ward, at firstname.lastname@example.org.