Monday, June 01, 2009

Minneapolis Public Works Department: Blame the pedestrian and promote cars

Last week there was a small neighborhood meeting with staff from Minneapolis Public Works about pedestrian safety at one location in Seward Neighborhood in Minneapolis.

It seems that the Public Works department has the same analysis of any pedestrian safety situation:
  1. We can't make cars wait too long at an intersection.
  2. We don't mark crosswalks unless it is at an intersection where the cars are already forced to stop by a traffic light or stop sign because:
  • Drivers ignore the crosswalks.
  • Drivers ignore the state law that requires them to stop for pedestrians at marked (or unmarked) crosswalks.
  • We don't want to give pedestrians a false sense of security.
In short, it seems they are saying that they don't care that the drivers are the ones causing the unsafe conditions and that pedestrians should only cross at traffic lights or stop signs (no matter how far out of the way they are.

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