In a survey of 100 area residents conducted in November by the Pike District Pedestrian Safety Campaign, an overwhelming majority of respondents said they would walk more in the Pike District, if only it were safer
Other revealing findings from the survey include:
70% say driver inattention to pedestrians is the most dangerous obstacle.
Almost one half say there aren’t crosswalks where they want to cross.
44% say pushing the walk button to cross is a problem.
One third say there isn’t enough light at night to walk safely
65% of respondents walk in the Pike District three or more time a week
The survey is part of a broader effort to improve conditions for pedestrians in the Pike District. This past September, advocates, Friends of White Flint, and Coalition for Smarter Growth launched the campaign by placing pedestrian safety signs around the district. With messages like “Wish there was a crosswalk here? So do we,” the signs call attention to needed improvements and encourage walkers to join in the push for safer streets.
“In January, based on the survey results, we will prioritize the improvements that can be implemented relatively easily and inexpensively,” said Amy Ginsburg, Executive Director at Friends of White Flint. “The community will then advocate for implementing those simple changes to make walking in the Pike District as safe as possible as quickly as possible.”
Respondents to the survey noted areas where walking was not safe and gave many suggestions for ways to improve walkability in the Pike District. Here are a few comments.
“The largest danger to me are drivers who are turning right: they often don’t look right before roaring into ongoing traffic. I have almost been hit several times. The other danger are the unpleasant stretches where sidewalks are missing or badly maintained. The third problem are the long, long stretches without crosswalks or lights.”
“The slip turn lanes make it hard to cross even when I have a signal. The Pike is a highway, not a street. It is way too wide and there are so many curb cuts. It feels transgressive to walk in an area so obviously designed primarily for through-traffic and commuters.”
“We need longer, automatic walk signals on crosswalks across Rockville Pike”.