StreetFilm: Raising the Walk

From the StreetFilms animation division, which brought you the chicane, comes another instant classic, this one illustrating the benefits of the raised crosswalk — basically a wide speed hump with a crosswalk on top.

Raised crosswalks have been recommended for areas including Hell’s Kitchen and the Gowanus section of Brooklyn, where speeding traffic and turn conflicts make for particularly dangerous conditions.

Warning: Once you watch this, your brain is likely to queue the "Frogger" theme when crossing the street. 

Video produced by Elizabeth Press

  • The animation videos are really great at demonstrating how these traffic calming techniques work in a fun way.

  • Braddy

    Now we just need a Space Invaders animation where the ped blasts away cars!

  • flp

    sweet!! if only re-designing streets (and altering driver behavior) were that simple. *sigh*

    and, yes, frogger did come to mind.

    i want a q-bert inspired clay-mation next! perhaps a short showing the pitfalls of switching from one form of inefficient mass-transportation to the next would be an appropriate topic? there the viewer could be ushered out of q-bert mode by virtually hopping on a bike or entering a truly efficient example of mass transportation.

  • momos

    What a great idea!

    Instead of making people descend to the level of cars to cross the street, make cars drive up over the space where people walk.

    One of Jan Gehl’s major principles is making drivers feel as though they are entering the domain of pedestrians, not the other way around.

    There aren’t many better ways to do this than the raised crosswalk.

  • Danaeo

    This might be a good solution to intersections where stop signs aren’t working and a traffic light isn’t appropriate. For instance, in Prospect Heights at the intersection of Flatbush, Park Place and Carlton, where there’s a tiny triangular pedestrian island. The crossing across Carlton onto the triangle from Park Place is especially dangerous (well, the whole thing is dangerous). It isn’t possible to put a traffic light there because it would back up Flatbush and cars routinely ignore the stop sign.

    I wonder if DOT would agree to put these on truck or bus routes? They already have a policy about not installing speed bumps on those routes.

  • Cross this

    These would also slow down emergency vehicles and hinder snow plowing. What about drainage? And you just create a drag-strip speed bump to speed bump.

  • Cross this, you seem to oppose anything that aims to slow down cars for the purpose of protecting pedestrian life and limb. Do you think crossing the street on foot is not something that should be facilitated? Do you think that crossing the street is… unusual? Welcome to Streetsblog!

  • Cross this: Trying to find reasons not to do things that benefit pedestrians. Why?

    Drainage is not a problem at all, in fact in places like Portland they have excellent ways to integrate bioswells into their raised crosswalks.

    They have raised crosswalks in Boston. I was there in snowy February last year and there seemed to be no problem with plows. If they have raised crosswalks in cold weather cities like Boston, there is no reason why they can’t have them everywhere.

    Finally, these might slow emergency vehicles 1 or 2 seconds, maybe?! Think of it, If they prevent just one child from being hit by a car I am sure that more than makes up for a few seconds delay.


  • Chris

    There was only one inaccuracy in your film. You have an NYPD car stopping for the pedestrians, instead of flashing its lights and barreling through without a second thought.

  • Scott

    Don’t they already have something like this in Manhattan on, I think, 20th St between 1st and 2nd aves. Schools on both sides of the street.

    Wonder how that is working out?

  • Eric

    Elizabeth Press is the Nick Park of the Livable Streets movement.


  • Christine Berthet

    I love it .. Hell’s kitchen will take 10 of those .. Noneed to wrap it as a gift , it is a valentine for myself .. where is the check out line?
    Thank You Elizabeth..


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