Safety Improvements Coming To Downtown Crosswalk

Safety Improvements Coming To Downtown Crosswalk

4:27pm Jan 22, 2020
Crystal Towers is a public housing complex on 6th St. in downtown Winston-Salem. The crosswalk leading to the nearest bus stop spans four lanes of undivided traffic. EDDIE GARCIA/WFDD

A dangerous pedestrian crosswalk in Winston-Salem is getting overhauled. It's part of a larger plan to address pedestrian safety across the city.

The crosswalk in front of Crystal Towers, a public housing complex for the elderly and people with disabilities, has long been considered treacherous by those who live there. Many residents use the crosswalk to get to the bus stop, crossing four lanes of traffic in downtown Winston-Salem.  

Last September, a resident who uses a wheelchair was hit and sustained injuries crossing the roadway.

According to officials, the improvements are coming partly in response to residents of Crystal Towers raising their concerns at a public safety meeting in December. 

Matthew Burczyk is the Bicycle & Pedestrian Coordinator for the City of Winston-Salem Department of Transportation.  

“So we would go from four lanes to five lanes," he says. "Essentially one shared motor vehicle lane in each direction, a center turn lane, and then two bike lanes. What that allows us to do is then put a refuge island for pedestrians in that center turn lane. So they can cross one lane, have a chance to stop, look for traffic coming in the other direction, and then continue to make that crossing.”

Burczyk says the proposed fix also serves current and projected vehicle traffic. There is no hard timeline for completion of the project.

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