Streetsblog was thrilled to hear about the quiet unveiling of San Francisco’s first raised crosswalk on a through city street, at Steiner and Hermann, across from Duboce Park.
For a safe-streets advocate, raised crosswalks represent a clean break from the auto-über alles perspective that has so dominated our streets. By keeping the crosswalk at the level of the sidewalk, it sends a message: this is pedestrian space. Motorists–yeah you! Slow down! Be safe. Because if you try to race across one, not only are you going to drop your cell phone and spill your latte, but you might even damage the undercarriage of your car.
And unlike a normal speed hump, raised crosswalks slow cars down exactly where they should–where walkers need to cross.
Now, technically, the Duboce Park crosswalk isn’t the first raised crosswalk in San Francisco–but the existing ones are on backstreets, such as Pearl where it meets Market. The handful that exist are in low traffic areas/places where cut-through traffic can be hazardous, such as in the designated “home zone” around Marshall Elementary in the Mission. There’s also one on Nancy Pelosi Drive, but that’s deep inside Golden Gate Park.
And there’s one other that sometimes gets overlooked. More on that below.