Washington, D.C., is planning to release a five-year, $12 million pedestrian strategy today that includes better timing of signals, clearer marking of crosswalks and other steps to reduce accidents and injuries, reports the city’s Post. The initiative will target 61 “high hazard” traffic intersections, including many with a large number of pedestrian injuries or deaths over three years. The plan calls for measures such as restriping crosswalks and changing signal timing to allow more time for people to cross intersections.
George Branyan, the city’s pedestrian coordinator, spoke about creating “a culture of civility” between pedestrians and drivers. For now, however, the city must depend on new public education programs, better engineered intersections and tickets for lawbreakers, he said. In recent years, officials have faced growing pressure to make Washington more walkable. Although the struggle of pedestrians vs. automobiles is a century old, the increased urbanization of the District over the past decade has created new battle zones downtown and in many neighborhoods. Last year, 25 pedestrians were killed in the city, the highest number in the past five years.