Design Criteria for Crosswalk Width and Position at Signalized Intersections

Wael alhajyaseen's picture
Journal Title, Volume, Page: 
Journal of Civil Engineering and Architecture
Year of Publication: 
2012
Authors: 
Wael Alhajyaseen
Department of Civil Engineering, An-Najah National University, Nablus P.O. Box 7, Palestine
Current Affiliation: 
Department of Civil Engineering, An-Najah National University, Nablus P.O. Box 7, Palestine
Hideki Nakamura
Department of Civil Engineering, Nagoya University, Nagoya 464-8603, Japan
Preferred Abstract (Original): 
Existing optimization methodologies for intersection operations assumes a fixed geometric design, however the geometry and operational system should be simultaneously optimized to produce the best performance. Signalized crosswalks are complex and critical pedestrian facilities. Their geometry and configuration directly affect the safety, cycle length and resulting delays for all users. As crosswalks become wider or they are placed further upstream, the cycle length will increase due to the all-red time requirement, which deteriorates the overall mobility levels of signalized intersections. In contrast, when crosswalk width decreases, the required minimum pedestrian crossing time increases due to the bi-directional pedestrian flow effects, which leads to longer cycle length. Furthermore, existing manuals and guidelines do not offer any specification for the required crosswalk width under various pedestrian demand conditions. This study aims to propose new criteria for designing crosswalk width at signalized intersections, which can optimize the performance from the viewpoint of vehicular traffic and pedestrians. The proposed methodology considers pedestrian demand and its characteristics (such as bi-directional flow effects), vehicle demand and the geometric characteristics of the intersection. The concept of optimized crosswalk width is proposed and demonstrated through a case study. Moreover, a comprehensive discussion regarding the merits and drawbacks of existing strategies on positioning crosswalks is presented. It was found that at signalized intersections, which are characterized by low pedestrian and high vehicle demands, crosswalk width of 2 meters is appropriate to minimize cycle length and resulting delays for all users including pedestrians.