KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) – Pedestrians are feeling less than safe at a designated crosswalk where Kansas City drivers don’t seem to be stopping when people want to cross.
The crosswalk spans six lanes of traffic on Main Street at 30th Street. Security cameras recently captured the challenge one man faced just trying to get across the street, with no cars stopping despite the pedestrian having the right of way to cross.
Safe streets advocate Ashley Hand says the video is cringe-worthy.
“Now he’s standing in the middle of the intersection and no one is even slowing down to yield to him even though he has the right of way,” Hand described.
Hand questions why that pedestrian or others have to face such danger in a designated crosswalk.
“He should not have to put his life at risk to cross the street in Kansas City,” she said.
It’s a problem Kansas City Councilman Eric Bunch is wanting to change before someone else gets hurt.
“We just have not developed a culture that respects pedestrian rights. And respects the crosswalk law,” he told KCTV5 News.
Bunch represents the district where the crosswalk seen in the video is located and knows it’s an issue.
“It’s those big multilane streets that pose the biggest threat to people walking,” he explained, saying there is nothing in the works to fix the issue right now, though he is working on it.
Bunch has introduced a resolution called “Vision Zero” that is aimed at making not just that crosswalk but downtown streets overall safer, “by design through systems change and infrastructure change.”
The Streetcar is set to extend down Main Street into the Plaza over the next few years, and Bunch sees that as an opportunity to rethink the designs of downtown streets and maybe even narrow Main Street down from six lanes to make it easier to cross.