Scrambled, please: City unveils new pedestrian pilot project
Pedestrians and motorists will encounter something new on Edmonton’s streets, pedestrian scrambles.
The city installed one of the scrambles at an intersection on Jasper Avenue and 104 Street Thursday, while a second is planned for use in early October on 82 Avenue and 105 Street.
Their design allows pedestrians to cross in any direction while the light is red. Vehicles are not permitted to make right turns when traffic signals are red, providing safe and accessible crossings in pedestrian-heavy areas.
Scrambles aren’t new to North America, with Canadian cities like Vancouver being one of the first locations in the world to use them starting in the 1940s.
Over time, the use of them fell out of fashion including in Edmonton when in 1959, the last two major pedestrian scramble intersections were removed at 101A Avenue and 101 Street, and at 102 Avenue and 101 Street.
The city does admit the scrambles will impact vehicle, transit, and pedestrian travel times, but are also expected to improve pedestrian safety and convenience.
The scrambles are part of a one-year pilot project to see if the intersection design can decrease or eliminate potential collisions between pedestrians and vehicles.