Global Street Design Guide

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Table of Contents

Global Street Design Guide

Existing Conditions

This illustration depicts a central city street which has been widened over time to accommodate motorized traffic at the expense of pedestrian space.

Wide travel lanes facilitate speeding and hinder pedestrian safety and comfort. Cross-street traffic is not signalized, creating frequent and serious conflicts among motorists and pedestrians.

Narrow and inaccessible sidewalks result in unsafe walking conditions, which can lead to a decline in business activities.

Central medians are equipped with barriers to restrict pedestrian crossing. This configuration often results in unsafe actions by the  pedestrians, like jumping over or cutting through the barrier in order to cross the street.

Long crosswalk distances with no clear markings, lack of refuge islands, and high vehicular speeds expose vulnerable users to  extremely unsafe conditions. Such streets act as pedestrian barriers and divide neighborhoods.

Bogota, Colombia

Design Guidance

Due to its central location, the street has the potential to transform the surrounding neighborhoods. Redesign this street to serve needs of all street users and increase its overall capacity.

Remove two travel lanes in each direction and provide accessible and wider sidewalks to support safe pedestrian movement and commercial activity.

 Provide refuge islands, mark pedestrian crossings, and improve markings to make crossings safer and shorter.

Introduce a dedicated transit lane in each direction to increase transit capacity and efficiency.

 Offset boarding islands provide for safe and efficient boarding and alighting for transit riders while reducing vehicle speeds at the bus stops.

 Add a mid-block crossing to facilitate the access to the boarding islands on each side of the center-running transit only corridor and shorten the crossing distance by providing safe refuge islands for pedestrians.

Offset the travel lane in correspondence to the boarding island to reduce speeds and improve motorists’ yielding behavior.

Implement cycle tracks on each direction and planted buffers to provide safe facilities for cyclists.

Add trees and green infrastructure on the sidewalks and the medians to provide shade, reduce noise, improve air quality, and support stormwater management. See: Green Infrastructure.

Making the street more aesthetically appealing and comfortable for pedestrian use can attract businesses and help to regenerate the district.

Mexico City, Mexico

Toronto, Canada

Adapted by Global Street Design Guide published by Island Press.

Example 3: 40 m

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Example 3: 40 m