Media Contact: Dena Iverson at (202) 727-6914
(Washington, DC) Mayor Adrian M. Fenty announced that the District has released its final draft of the Pedestrian Master Plan. The plan is a culmination of 18 months worth of study that examined all aspects of the District’s pedestrian environment. The detailed planning process included extensive agency and community stakeholder involvement through a Technical Advisory Committee, an online survey, focus group meetings, field surveys in specific corridors and a citywide public meeting. Last year, 25 pedestrians were struck and killed in the District. In 2008, 9 pedestrians have been struck and killed to date.
“The District is committed to making streets safer for pedestrians,” said Mayor Fenty. “The Pedestrian Master Plan recommends new traffic safety policies and roadway improvements to meet that goal.”
The goal of the plan is to reduce the number of pedestrians killed and injured in crashes with motor vehicles and to increase pedestrian activity by making walking a comfortable and accessible mode of travel.
Summary of Pedestrian Master Plan Recommendations
- Improve Access and Safety at Signalized Crossings and Intersections
Improvements recommended at intersections throughout the District with significant pedestrian activity.
- Improve Access and Safety at Uncontrolled Crossings and Intersections
A major focus of the plan is to improve safety of pedestrians crossing at locations without a stop sign or traffic signal.
- Implement Improvements to the Eight High-priority Study Corridors
Study corridors improvements include: sidewalk repair and construction, relocation of bus stops, signalization changes, enhanced crosswalks, and reduced crossing distances at intersections.
- Provide sidewalks on both sides of all streets
The city will refine its system for identifying needed sidewalks, inspecting sidewalks, and identifying and cataloging needed repairs.
- Improve pedestrian access and safety at bus stops while maximizing transit efficiency
- Revise the DDOT Design and Engineering Manual
This revision will address pedestrian needs, specifically incorporating best-practice revisions identified in the master planning process.
- Increase penalties for motorists for infractions that impact pedestrian safety
The current fine in the District of Columbia for failing to yield the right-of-way to pedestrians is $50.00. In addition to increased fines, offenders of infractions hindering pedestrian safety should receive points on their license.
- Expand the District’s Photo Radar Speeding Reduction Program
Motorists exceeding posted speed limits present hazards for pedestrians by increasing the frequency and severity of crashes and reducing the comfort of pedestrians walking along the street.
- Expand Pedestrian Safety Campaign Effort
Content of the materials should inform pedestrians as well as motorists and may include:
- Rules of the road
- Street crossing safety
- Pedestrian visibility to drivers at night
- Stopping for pedestrians in crosswalks
- Yielding to pedestrians while turning at signalized intersections
- The relationship between vehicle speeds and the severity of pedestrian injury
- Conduct an Educational Campaign on the Benefits of Walking
- Expand the Implementation of the Safe Routes to School Program
The District Department of Transportation (DDOT) will schedule public comment meetings in June to discuss the strategies of the Pedestrian Master Plan. The meetings are planned to be held in Wards 3, 6 and 7 and will be open to all District Residents.
The Pedestrian Master Plan is scheduled to be implemented over 10 years at a total cost of over $18 million.
Available online is the District of Columbia Pedestrian Master Plan website.