Pedestrian Scrambles Benefit Everyone Using Streets
Rachel Quednau discusses the benefits of pedestrian scrambles, using her current hometown of Cambridge, Massachusetts, as an example. The intersections allow pedestrians to cross in any direction while keeping cars from turning. They work especially well, says Quednau, in areas with lots of pedestrians and on stroads, the street-road hybrids that can be treacherous for pedestrians to cross:
For me and my fellow walkers, it’s far more efficient to be able to safely cross to the diagonal corner of a street in a matter of seconds, protected by a light, than to fearfully wait for a break in traffic to dart across. It also seems more efficient for cars to then travel through the intersection on a green light without needing to worry about interactions with pedestrians during their trip.
She also argues that pedestrian scrambles are cost effective to put in, requiring only the adjustment of intersection signals and some public education about how to use them. In addition, she says that while the research on pedestrian scrambles is relatively scant, what is available suggests that the intersections do improve public safety.