Monday, August 20, 2012

A Bridge. A Trail. A Fail.

Recently, I talked about bridging some divides in Richardson. I focused on West Spring Valley Rd because there are good things beginning to happen in southwest Richardson. I talked about bridges and creeks and parks and pedestrians and cars. There's a place in east Richardson where these careabouts all come together in miniature, at the intersection of Yale Blvd and Apollo Rd, where Duck Creek flows under the streets.

After the jump, catching up at an urban planning fail that's so easy to solve, why hasn't it been fixed?

Duck Creek flows under the bridges, but the Duck Creek Linear Park trail rises up and crosses over the intersection, then drops down again to the creek bed. When those bridges were renovated, every thought was given to how they looked to the drivers passing over them (beautiful). No thought was given to the safety of pedestrians crossing the streets (not so safe). The new brick walls obscured the sight lines between driver and pedestrian/cyclist. Since then, warning signs have been added; a Z-cut jog has been cut into the median to force walkers/cyclists to slow down and temporarily face traffic before crossing the street; and traffic lanes have been reserved for bikes, shifting cars out away from the curbs. All good. Safety has been restored (mostly).

Nevertheless, as I first pointed out almost two years ago, the most basic of safety features still has not been implemented. That is, markings on the street itself to signal a trail crossing are missing. Almost two years later there's still not so much as a stripe painted across the street to mark a crosswalk. The bike lane itself has been newly striped down the street. Why can't they paint a crosswalk?

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