Friday, June 3, 2011

Crosswalk Sting On Broadway Saturday Morning

Thanks to The Expired Meter for sending us the tip that CPD and CDOT are conducting a pedestrian crosswalk sting Saturday morning starting at 8am. If you're driving on Broadway at 5050 (formerly the Combined Insurance/Aon building just north of Argyle Street), be very, very aware of pedestrians in the crosswalk there.  Surprise!  They may be cops looking for drivers who don't stop when they step off the curb and onto the crosswalk.  Read more about it at The Expired Meter.


  1. OMG. I have to rant here. I have had a couple of RAHMULAN ales here, but this is crazy.

    How abut a sting of the crazies that walk in front of your car trying to slow you down so they can feel like they have power over you? Or the people that wander the streets on Wilson and Jaywalk? Give me a break.

    A CROSSWALK STING? GIVE ME A BREAK! Massive waste of resources. Someone just got shot on Sheridan, and they are going to have a CROSSWALK STING!

    This is about as smart as the time John Edwards decided to have a girlfriend on the side.

  2. I'm going to rant a little here, too.

    I'm thrilled with this sting and hope we have more.

    As a pedestrian, I'm appalled with the disregard motorists show pedestrians, and I have witnessed three pedestrian collisions on Broadway.

    I do not walk against lights. I do not loiter in the crosswalk but hurry across as best I can while lugging groceries, or whatever. I make sure I'm cautious at the hundreds of curb-cuts at all the parking lots and drive-throughs, because I can count a dozen occasions where I have narrowly missed being run down by some moron flying out of a parking lot or drive through bank without any consideration for who might be walking down the sidewalk, and I can't count the occasions where I have almost been run over by people turning right on the red light while I attempt to cross on the green/walk light.

    Last I heard, the GREEN/WALK light means WALK, not hop, skip, scamper, or run like hell.

    I'm tired of impatient, aggressive motorists who don't heed the lights- sorry folks, but when you turn right on the red, remember that people who are walking with the green have the right of way, and so do people walking in a designated crosswalk where there is no signal or stop sign. That's what the crosswalk is for.

  3. Soooo is this what the new superentendent of police suggested? Uh, don't get to arrogant just because you caught a few gangbangers, you got a LOT more to go.
    Leave US alone. And yea, this is a DIRECT RANT.

  4. You would think with all the crime and gang problems that face the Uptown area that the Police department would spending time on these problems instead of spending time and money on crosswalk stings. If they need to give tickets why not nail almost every driver I see on cells and other electronic devices while driving and bike riders that never obey the laws as stopping at red lights, signs and not stopping for people in crosswalks also.

  5. What about the foul language these thugs use while they jaywalk and swagger across the street?

  6. This sting isn't at a signaled crosswalk, it is at a mid-block cross walk.

    The idea of the law is correct, in that pedestrians should have the right of way, but the execution is unfortunately not logical.

    A mid-block stop for cars on a 4 lane road is a nightmare. And, when the people in lane 1 stop (especially if they are in a truck) then the people in lane 2 have no way of knowing there is a pedestrian in the crosswalk. It immediately creates a dangerous situation for the pedestrian as they cross into the second lane. (Not to mention the cars behind the stopping cars that CANNOT see any signal of what may be happening in the cross walk.)

    Factor in that the situation is only mortally dangerous to the pedestrian and you have a situation where they are supposed to be dictating the action, but they have every motivation to act reactively.

    The goal is laudable: help pedestrians get around more easily. But, the execution is idiotic, and dangerous.

    A car weighs thousands of pounds and travels with an astonishing amount of force. Asking the walker to enter this situation without a lighted signal, and with the implied safety of a painted path, is not a well-conceived solution.

  7. The thought just occurred to me that that people most affected by that intersection might have come up with this suggestion and had the candor to make it happen.

    I think J-Walking "stings" and the like in Uptown would be very much in line with the new police chiefs aim of lowering the perception of high crime by sweating the seemingly small stuff. Further, a J-Walking sting (or "running stop signs on bikes" sting, etc.) might seem benign, but it gives the cops an actual basis to take a closer look at these little gangbangers and drug runners and disrupt their operations.

    A few otherwise upstanding citizens might be inconvenienced and pulled over for their utter disregard for stop signs while on bikes, but a little bit of understanding that the cops are doing an important service to community might go a long way. Admit you were a little careless, and you just might get a "friendly warning" this time..

  8. I'm really kind of disgusted by the lack of respect for the law that the driver have shown here. If you don't like the law, lobby to have it changed. In the meantime, pedestrians have the right of way WHENEVER they're in the crosswalk, regardless of the color of the lights.

    The sting is not a waste of resources, the few police officers needed for this will probably ticket enough people to pay their salaries and then some. Also, it keeps the streets safe for ALL the users of it, not just the drivers. I hope they follow it up with cell phone stings.

    More than 6,000 pedestrians are hit by cars in Illinois each year, according to the Illinois Department of Transportation. The accidents kill about 170 people and seriously injure more than 1,000.

    In 2009, while walking in crosswalks in the seven-county Chicago area, 12 pedestrians were struck and killed and more than 1,300 were injured, according to IDOT. Seven of the fatalities and more than 1,000 of the injuries occurred in Chicago, IDOT reports.

  9. Weren't people excited about the "broken windows" ideal that the new police chief espoused? Now they're upset he's actually doing it...

  10. how sad.....this is how they want to close the revenue gap....there's no gang problem in Uptown, is there? it's all peachy keen.....pathetic.


  11. I got busted in one of these a couple years ago. I am not one of the drivers that rushes people at cross walks, or gets impatient. I haven't had a moving violation (other than this) in at least a decade. But I got nailed because the officer basically jumped out in front of me without giving time to do anything other than swerve into oncoming traffic. Not only did I get a ticket, I nearly had a head on collision. I was going about 15 mph.

    I am sure this is a very effective use of resources. I say that because the officers got 3 other people in the time it took to write my ticket. Hopefully they put my $65 to good use. I also hope their fundraising efforts are effective, and give the PD more funds to use to fight gangs, or higher more officers.

  12. I kind of like it.

    - The city gets more money to hire cops.

    - The cops have a presence on our streets.

    - The pedestrians are safe from the horrible Ainslie/Broadway/weekend traffic quagmire.

    - "Broken Windows" goes into effect.

    Since 8am isn't exactly Gangbanger Prime Time, the officers aren't being taken away from their crime fighting duties.

    I like it.

  13. i would be fine with this, but turnabout is fair play. i want stings for people who start walking after the blinking red starts and for bicyclists who ignore signals and laws.

  14. Rebecca, citing pedestrian mortality rates as a support for this law is only applicable if this law lowers the mortality rates.

    I assume you have some stats from another city who used a similar law to lower citizen mortality rates? Post' em up and you win.

  15. As a pedestrian, working downtown, I'm often appalled by how wreckless drivers can be turning corners (oblivious of pedestrians, often viewed as a nuisance!)

    As a driver in Uptown, I'm often shocked at zombie-like pedestrians crossing the street against the light without even looking. (Sheridan and Wilson is good case in point).

    I think you have to assume drivers AND pedestrians are nuts, just to be safe.

  16. I have a rant here. Stop your freaking car when there is a person in the cross walk. Number one it's the law! Number two it's the law! I guess you could go ahead and run over the person...hmmm wonder how your life will turn out after that. If it's soooo much trouble to stop for all the slow walking people crossing the street. Park your car, get OUT of your car and WALK. Then you just might see what it's like. We need MORE STINGS, more signs to educate these uneducated drivers and more police response when someone does not stop and much higher fines, maybe arrest them...that should slow them down. I just watched a little old lady, crossing at a freaking light (she had the green) with her walker...the car turning almost ran her over and actually leaned out their window and cursed at her for taking so long. If you have a problem stopping at should not be allowed to drive...period.

  17. I agree with what TrumanSqrNbr about covers it.

  18. @starckmad - pretty much sums it up - lol

  19. Trey, I was stating pedestrian death numbers to cite the danger of being a pedestrian, not that these laws work or don't work. If, however all drivers did stop for pedestrians in crosswalks like the law stated, logic would dictate that those stopped cars would be less likely to injure or kill pedestrians.

  20. This is a serious public safety issue. I do not understand or appreciate why UU has decided to give a "heads up" to potential violators.
    This sting is the result of issues brought TO the police department, by your neighbors at CAPS meetings. Should that not deserve a little more respect?
    I am going to bring this up at the next CAPS meeting, to please keep a lid on it next time......very disappointed.

  21. Mr. Littleton, I frankly am at a loss
    understanding your point?

    I think UU merely brought up the fact that this was taking place.

    You can either say:

    "the police have better things to do..."
    "yes, people who drive cars are evil"
    " pedestrians in Uptown are a sandwich short of a picnic"

    (the answer is all of the above.....and that's the mindful of everyone!)

  22. Crossing Broadway between Argyle and Foster is like playing human Frogger. If you are upset about this sting, you have never attempted to push a stroller across Broadway. Even at the signals, it's dangerous at best.

  23. @Jeffrey: I agree with you that these drivers should be caught and ideally they shouldn't know about the trap. I was "love tapped" by a car in Uptown once while crossing the street and the only good moment was when I saw the lights start flashing and that ass of a driver getting a ticket.

    That being said: UU is linking to an article, not reporting this first hand. People in Uptown have a right to be informed and it's refreshing to hear that police activities are going on in the ward.

  24. The police themselves announce where pedestrian crossing stings will be, where DUI checkpoints will be, etc. They send out emails and press releases. Don't shoot the messenger.

  25. @ Caring Neighbor-

    I don't want to shoot any messengers, and most drivers are respectful.
    I brought up this issue at the community meeting on Marine Dr. during open questioning last week, a lot of questions were asked and not enough time to get to it, there were many other issues.
    This is not only a safety issue, more serious for some, it also addresses the need to have more foot traffic.
    In my estimation if walking is giving people bad experiences then fewer people walk.

    I am providing this link from the Tribune, can we all please take aggressive driving towards our pedestrian neighbors more seriously? Thanks.,0,1098096.story