The Water Cooler – Putting Lights on Crosswalks

February 11, 2019 12:00 pm · 38 comments


The “Water Cooler” is a feature on where we ask you a question or provide a topic, and you talk about it.

The “Water Cooler” will be up Monday-Friday at noon.

Today’s question:

Do you think all crosswalks on major roadways should have lights, or some other kind of marking that clearly shows when somebody is walking across the street?

Talk about it….

AnonZ February 11, 2019 at 12:05 PM


Simonpure February 11, 2019 at 12:09 PM

Sure. We have audibles for the blind.

Original G February 11, 2019 at 12:11 PM

Technology has been around for years and has improved. LEDs really so get your attention even during daylight hours. LEDs are sunk into the road surface. Can see a use for them in areas of past injuries to reduce reoccurrence.

Jackie February 11, 2019 at 12:12 PM

Yes. I realized we could look at less expensive systems for most crosswalks. Saving expensive, buried lights for the most critical and hazardous areas.

Concordejet February 11, 2019 at 12:15 PM

Only if the crosswalk can make it into a Disco Light so I can dance around on the cross walk

james hilton February 11, 2019 at 12:28 PM

certainly couldn’t hurt

martinezmike February 11, 2019 at 12:31 PM

Yes! Also, I think all crosswalks should be turned into moving walkways, like they have in airports!

Dawg February 11, 2019 at 12:50 PM

It’s a good idea, the one I see all the time is the one on Cowell. It’s a real attention grabber and gets people to stop for pedestrians.

Shoulda Coulda February 11, 2019 at 12:42 PM

I think they work well at mid block crosswalks
where drivers would not normally be expecting
to see a crosswalk. Walnut Creek has used them
to increase safety on Mt. Diablo Blvd. at
Broadway Plaza and on North Broadway,
North of Mt. Diablo Blvd., near the parking garage.
At both locations the pedestrian pushes a button
to activate the flashing lights. I think it’s a good
idea that alerts drivers and helps pedestrians.
I know it was much harder to cross near the
parking garage before the lights were installed.

Roz February 11, 2019 at 12:48 PM

Yes,….I could see how driving at night with or without raining would make a big difference.

Cdm95 February 11, 2019 at 12:48 PM

Yes! But on every cross walk. You have no idea how many times I’ve been close to getting hit on this specific cross walk between the dollar tree and park and shop on salvio street. I’m already half way across and ppl coming in from broadway street towards downtown don’t even stop for more than a second and don’t look for pedestrians crossing. I watch as they get to the stop sign and don look left or right and it’s really frustrating and really unsafe

Bob February 11, 2019 at 12:55 PM

The worst crosswalks in Concord are the ones in the downtown area–they are rose colored and very difficult to see at night or rainy days–lighting them might help, but at the least they should put a white border on them–the ones near Park & Shop are great!

Jojo Potato February 11, 2019 at 12:56 PM

I would prefer something like this:


Original G February 11, 2019 at 1:05 PM

Break out the lawn chairs, umbrella and camera just to watch the pot heads freak out.

Silva February 11, 2019 at 1:13 PM

I did.

Kirkwood February 11, 2019 at 1:22 PM

I’ve seen that story before, a neat idea, art combined with practicality. A bit expensive to apply and maintain, especially in Concord where there doesn’t seem to be any money for anything.

Cellophane February 11, 2019 at 1:13 PM

What’s wrong with people being responsible when they drive and pay attention?

Will lights be enough to wake up the distracted drivers?

Perhaps a special siren of some sort would be better?

Or perhaps retractable speed bumps that rise up to indicate when someone is on the crosswalk?

Just how much do the taxpayers have to pay for those folks who just can’t seem to take their driving responsibilities seriously?

Cellophane February 11, 2019 at 2:32 PM


Pedestrians need to be responsible too.

Those who are no are also costing taxpayers a lot of money.

It takes so little effort to be a responsible person.

Cowellian February 11, 2019 at 1:17 PM

I remember the lighted crosswalk on Cowell to be very inconsistent. It was supposed to be motion controlled, but if it was foggy, the lights frequently didn’t work, and the pedestrian was close to invisible.

BagsFlyFree February 11, 2019 at 3:42 PM

These got a shiny retrofit and included two new speed signs. Moving on up!

BFF Out!

Happy Squash February 11, 2019 at 1:32 PM

The lighted crosswalks make a big difference and are much easier for drivers to pay attention to. I would love to see them at crosswalks on all busy streets and especially in front of our area schools! They could really use this at the crosswalk in front of Pine Hollow Middle School and also at intersection of Ayers and Clayton Road, which continues to be pretty awful each morning.

Anon February 11, 2019 at 1:34 PM

Yes, because when your are driving near a pedestrian crossing and another motorist coming towards you insists on using their high beams it makes it impossible to see a pedestrian. Also, With Windshields Being Tinted Make It Difficult To SEE Pedestrians too.

There you have it, two things that aren’t being enforced so you now have to spend millions….

anotheranon February 11, 2019 at 1:37 PM

Anything to improve seeing pedestrians, ESPECIALLY those wearing dark clothing, and more especially around Concord, where the street lighting is so poor, after the change from the older mercury vapor lights to the newer lights we now are saddled with. The old lighting provided a wider area of light; the new lights seem more directed downward.

BagsFlyFree February 11, 2019 at 3:45 PM

I don’t know if McGallian brokered some new lights for his district or what, but the area around Turtle Creek/Cowell has a couple new led fixtures. Hopefully all of the wanna”b” leds will be chucked for legit ones.

BFF Out!

anon February 11, 2019 at 1:59 PM

Since so many people get hit by vehicles why don’t they change the laws and make it so that the vehicles have the right of way and then my people will look both ways before crossing the streets?

Michael February 11, 2019 at 2:02 PM

Studies have shown the flashing lights work for those of us that choose to obey and yield when pedestrians are present. Some drivers simply drive through them even when pedestrians are crossing the road as evidenced at Detroit Ave by the Costco.

International studies and both Federal and State Department of Transportation consistently state “Traffic Cameras” are the best technology for making intersections safe for pedestrians and bicyclist.

Ceebaby February 11, 2019 at 2:06 PM

Yes. ESPECIALLY in school zones!

Captain Bebops February 11, 2019 at 2:07 PM

They tried the embedded ones that outline the crosswalk in Martinez. Two years later they no longer worked. So they just put flashing lights above the crosswalk sign.

Kirkwood February 11, 2019 at 2:54 PM

I’ve noticed that bicyclists sometimes fail to push the button and cross in front of traffic.

Jojo Potato February 11, 2019 at 4:22 PM

Those buttons are generally placed for the convenience of pedestrians, not cyclists. It’s often times not worth the effort to go over to the sidewalk to hit the button.

ON DA February 11, 2019 at 3:07 PM

Constructive Notice.

Tsa February 11, 2019 at 3:23 PM

Definitely NOT, total waste of money. Both drivers and pedestrians need to be aware of where they are and what they’re doing. Stop trying to mandate worthless fixes that only encourage people to be more brain dead than they already are.

CS February 11, 2019 at 6:05 PM

While people should definitely be more careful, whether they’re pedestrians or drivers, what’s the harm in making even more sure that drivers will see the pedestrians? It’s already hard enough to see people at night, these lights would make that a lot easier.

Bob February 11, 2019 at 4:15 PM

Crossing multiple lanes with no light signals in this area meets my definition of a suicide attempt.

Lights on every marked crosswalk should be law.

Anonymoooooose February 11, 2019 at 5:22 PM

Especially in areas around schools. For example in front of Glenbrook Middle. Plenty of cars speeding on by (cops included) when children and other pedestrians are on those crosswalks. Stop or slow the heck down!

The Fearless Spectator February 11, 2019 at 9:58 PM

They need to be installed in Heather Farm Park. The park serves as the entrance road for Seven Hiils School. During drop off and pick up of students speeding and ignoring pedestrians in the crosswalks is typical. Perhaps lighted crosswalks will help bring at least a minor element of pedestrian safety to San Carlos Drive.

MattFromConcord February 11, 2019 at 10:43 PM

Yes they should.
Some used to but never lasted long before they were removed. The better question should be, why put them in then take them out later. THAT would be a waste of money.

Sandy G. February 12, 2019 at 10:11 AM

Maybe not at intersections with stop lights, but at one’s with no lights absolutely. I have mixed feelings about stop signs. Four-way stops with good overhead (street lamps) lighting, pededtrians should be visable enough. Of course there’s always gonna be idiots who just don’t give damn.

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