It’s been a while residents in north College Park have been discussing the issue of pedestrian safety at the Rhode Island Avenue (between Edgewood and MD 193).
The NCPCA also discussed this issue in the past several times.
The City and the County will soon have another opportunity to discuss this matter further. Based on my research, I’ve compiled a list of possible ways to make safe crosswalks that may be suitable for Rhode Island. Please see these options below and let me know your thoughts on them.
1. Raised, textured crosswalk.
2. Brick crosswalk.
3. HAWK signal When not activated, the signal is blanked out. The HAWK signal is activated by a pedestrian push button or passive pedestrian sensor. The overhead signal begins flashing yellow and then solid yellow, advising drivers to prepare to stop. The signal then displays a solid red and shows the pedestrian a “Walk” indication. Finally, an alternating flashing red signal indicates that motorists may proceed when safe, after coming to a full stop. The pedestrian is shown a flashing “Don’t Walk” with a countdown indicating the time left to cross
4. In-Street Signs
In-street crosswalk signs can be installed at un-signalized pedestrian crossings to make the crosswalk more visible and increase driver yielding. They are placed at the crosswalk on a median, but should not obstruct the pedestrian path of travel.
5. Flashing yellow beacon: Cheaper than hawk lights but somewhat debatable. The County put in a pedestrian activity flashing yellow beacon at the Trolley Trail where it crosses Paint Branch Parkway. That introduced a relatively unfamiliar traffic feature which made pedestrians feel a false sense of security. That was because motorists view a yellow light as a signal to yield not stop. At least 3 people were hit.