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3.7D Pedestrian crossings

Sidewalk visibility

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Visibility image

It is critical that pedestrians at the corner have a good view of the travel lanes and that motorists in the travel lanes can easily see pedestrians.

Introduction

It is critical that pedestrians at the corner have a good view of the travel lanes and that motorists in the travel lanes can easily see pedestrians. Visibility between motorists and pedestrians can be impeded by parked vehicles near the intersection or by other vertical elements, such as buildings, fences, hedges, and walls.

Current parking ordinances restrict parking within the vicinity of intersections to increase the visibility of pedestrians. Minneapolis ordinance prohibits on‐street parking near intersections as follows:

  • Within 20’ of a legal pedestrian crossing (whether marked or unmarked) at an intersection unless otherwise allowed by a parking meter or traffic sign;
  • Within 30’ of the approach of a stop sign or traffic signal unless allowed by a parking meter or traffic sign; and
  • Within 5’ of an alleyway or driveway.
     

Design Considerations

Parking and curb extensions

Parking should generally not be allowed within 30’ of a stop sign or traffic signal and within 20’ of a marked or unmarked crosswalk. Curb extensions should generally be included near an intersection if there is full-time on-street parking.

Trees

Street trees should not be located within 40’ of an approaching cross street and within 20’ of a non-approaching cross street (see Figure 3.7D.1).

Vertical objects

Other vertical objects that obstruct visibility between pedestrians and motorists should generally not be included within 30’ of the intersection except traffic control devices or necessary safety equipment. Plantings should generally be shorter than 3’ tall within 30’ of the intersection to maintain visibility. 

Additional Guidance

  1. See also protected intersections guidance when there is a sidewalk-level protected bike lane. 
  2. See also street lighting guidance.

 

Figure 3.7D.1:
Sidewalk visibility at intersections

3.7D.1


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