IUB Administration Tackles Traffic Safety

Posted on April 25, 2011



Last year, medians and redesigned crosswalks were installed on Fee Lane due to recommendations by the Campus Traffic Safety Task Force which was formed after student Peter Duong was fatally hit by a car in 2009. However, one year later, some students argue that some of the most unsafe crossing sections here at IUB have not been addressed. Task force co-chair Kurt Zorn cited one reason for why all areas didn’t get crosswalks at the same time.

“So what the committee did in conjunction with the city [of Bloomington], the task force, was we decided to put in the two ‘test’ crosswalks to see whether they made a distinct difference,” Zorn said.

Zorn said that anecdotal evidence including reduced vehicle speeds, shows that they have made a difference. But besides slower cars, the Fee Lane medians also correct an issue still plaguing the Jordan-Mac crosswalk.

Many campus buses and one city bus stops at the Jordan-MAC bus stop. Unlike school buses, campus and city buses do not have stop signs on the side telling cars to stop, leaving IUB students like Zach Hutslar worried.

“I always feel safe crossing here,” Hutslar said, “but the only thing I don’t like is when there’s a bus crossing right over there, you can’t see when a car is coming around it and you have to walk halfway out into the road and sometimes the cars go really fast so it’s kind of dangerous.”

Zorn said part of the problem is the number of problematic crosswalks.

“Demand is always greater than supply,” Zorn said. “The demand for enhancements to infrastructure always outstrip the supply of funds available.”

Zorn also said that due to future plans to turn Jordan Avenue into a boulevard, the Jordan-Mac intersection will likely never see a median even though he also admitted that the area is a “terrible situation.”

In the meantime, Zorn says administration will continue to look for ways to educate pedestrians and bicyclists on how to keep themselves safe.

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