Las Vegas Ward 1 Councilwoman Lois Tarkanian will demonstrate the newest pedestrian safety improvements in her district Saturday, Nov. 2, at 10 a.m. at the intersection of Charleston Boulevard and Redwood Street. City of Las Vegas staff have installed a new bi-modal school and pedestrian crosswalk warning system at this location that warns motorists of students crossing Charleston during busy school hours when the flashers come on and a message board displays “School Crossing 25 MPH.” During all other times of any day, a pedestrian can activate a push button to turn on the flashers and a message board will announce to drivers “Pedestrian Crossing.” This system has been very effective in gaining improved motorist compliance in yielding to pedestrians in a crosswalk at the other three locations where it has been installed in the city — East Bonanza Road at North Wardelle Street, West Oakey Boulevard at Cahlan Drive, and Decatur Boulevard at West El Campo Grande Avenue. Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant pedestrian ramps also were installed.
“Residents requested crossing assistance at this busy location on Charleston Boulevard,” said Councilwoman Tarkanian. “Our traffic study revealed that besides being a busy crosswalk for high school and academy students, it is also a popular crossing location for folks taking the bus that has a westbound stop at this location, and for people who reside in the apartments on the north side who attend classes at the College of Southern Nevada. Assistance was needed at this intersection to help keep our children and residents safe, and there is nothing more important than that.”
City of Las Vegas Traffic Engineering staff have created the new bi-modal warning system using parts from various vendors so that it could work seamlessly with existing school flasher infrastructure. The devices are “custom made” to provide a school crossing flasher system that warns drivers of a reduced speed limit during school hours, and a pedestrian crossing warning system during all other hours.
Because Charleston Boulevard is a state-maintained roadway, permitting for the new device was required from the Nevada Department of Transportation. The cost for installation was approximately $80,000, funded through a portion of the Fiscal Year 2013 Pedestrian Safety Improvements allocation from the Las Vegas City Council. As funding is available, other school crosswalks that are busy outside school hours will be converted to this new system.