Improvements to city’s downtown crosswalks forthcoming
By Stephanie Johns
Talk of crosswalks has come up during at least two recent meetings in Madison: once during the Madison City Council meeting last month and again during the Main Street Advisory Board meeting.
One year ago a woman from Rutledge died after she and her husband were struck in the Madison crosswalk in front of Madison Chop House Grille.
City Manager David Nunn said that this accident has been the worst crosswalk accident by far during his tenure with the city.
“No question about it,” he said, remarking on the dark, rainy night of the accident. “Everything lined up to be a bad accident.”
He said he knows of other instances in which pedestrians were bumped or hit but that does not happen weekly or even monthly.
Last summer Jacob’s Engineering conducted “a cursory review of the traffic, roadway and pedestrian conditions” and made suggestions on how to “transition drivers from the higher speed arterial roadways to the low speed downtown area.”
Nunn said the city made a blanket offer to the Georgia Department of Transportation (DOT) to assist with improvements to the city’s crosswalks.
“We haven’t gotten the go-ahead as of yet,” he said. “They’ve not ruled it out.”
Nunn added that the city – if given the go-ahead – would start with the most dangerous crosswalk: “Certainly the crosswalk at Chop House.”
In the meantime, Nunn said the city will work on bringing all crosswalk signs, distances, paint and curbing as close to 100 percent as they can and go from there.
They are about 30 to 40 percent toward their goal of making the two Hancock Street intersections four-way stops.
Raye Southerland, district access management supervisor with the Georgia DOT District Two office in Tenille, provided a status update regarding local crosswalk work.
“We are working with the city to currently enhance and reconfigure some of the signs and the stripping associated with existing crosswalks,” he said.
Printed in the March 14, 2013 edition