Signalled crossings on the Cultural Trail

Recently, a signal change was made along the Cultural Trail, downtown. Where the trail crosses New York Street, signal priority for the trail users was removed requiring those wishing to cross the street, to press the pedestrian signal button. Did this happen for the Super Bowl? Perhaps, but it was never changed back after the Super Bowl packed up and left Indy. Luckily, this issue ran up the flag pole quickly at DPW and was changed so that when traffic lights turned green for autos, it did not require pedestrians and cyclists to press the button to cross, when travelling in the same direction.

Cultural Trail at IUPUI, note traffic signal is green, pedestrian is not (image credit: Curt Ailes)
Cultural Trail at IUPUI, note traffic signal is green, pedestrian is not (image credit: Curt Ailes)

Knowing this, it bothers me to see other parts of the trail that are NOT operating the same way. Case in point, along the Cultural Trail through the IUPUI campus. I am quite familiar with this stretch since I travel it by bike 4 times a week. The crossing at Michigan Street requires a pedestrian button push as does the crossing for the exit from the California Street parking structure. These are key places where pedestrians and automobiles interact.

It is my opinion that there should not be any required button pushes for pedestrians along the Cultural Trail. This is a world class piece of infrastructure that dedicates priority to pedestrians and cyclists and as such, should not diminish that by requiring button pushes to cross the street, when adjacent traffic is travelling in the same direction.

Comments 2

  • Curt-

    I’ve noticed this issue in other areas of the Cultural Trail. When I’m finishing my run on the east side / Alabama St. Corridor, I must consistently stop and press a button in order to cross.

    Having to press the button is a minor annoyance if I’m merely walking home, but doing so on the final mile of my run reduces my experience to a series of short sprints between button presses. If the Trail does indeed seek to prioritize pedestrians and cyclists over motorists, why must I ask permission to pass?

    This conflicts with the very purpose and spirt of the Trail. It also seems like a very easy (and probably cost-free) fix. Thanks for bringing it to light.

  • Many intersections in IUPUI are like this, such as when you want to cross Michigan along University. Frustrating and most students ignore the signals, anyway. You’d think IUPUI, being arguable the most pedestrian-heavy area of downtown, would have automatic signals.

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