Pedestrian safety concerns in the Cincinnati District prompts City Council discussion


POSTED: Sunday, May 4, 2014 - 4:08pm

UPDATED: Monday, May 5, 2014 - 9:07am

People in the Cincinnati District say it’s common to see eager pedestrians running across the street, instead of waiting on the crosswalk light to change.

“[I see] groups of people waiting on the sidewalk to run across the street or play “Frogger” across the street. Get in the lane and hopefully another cars not coming,” said Mario Givens, an El Paso resident.

Valentin Valdez works at Marco Polo and said he sees jay-walkers often.

“It’s just a lot of foot traffic. There’s all different kinds of things to do here and lots of it within walking distance,” Valdez said.

The crosswalks and lights in the area were put up after multiple pedestrian deaths several years ago.

The Corner Tavern & Grill sits on the corner of Mesa and Cincinnati.

“We are in front of three crosswalks and they are pretty well marked. I mean you have the signals, you have the buttons, you have the audible crosswalk,” said Sal Hernandez, general manager.

Hernandez said it’s up to the citizens to utilize the tools that have been put in place.
But some say this just isn't enough for the heavily traveled area.

“We've always had an issue on Mesa Street. With the growth of the university and the growth of the entertainment district and last week I witnessed another pedestrian accident,” said Cortney Niland, District 8 representative.

Driver and jaywalkers are both equally responsible.

“I’ve seen a lot of cars go up one-ways at night when we're all out here,” Givens said.
He said Cincinnati is an example. Givens also said there is a lot blocking the visibility of drivers.

Problems like this are prompting City Council to discuss a pedestrian safety plan for the Cincinnati District on Tuesday.

“Do we need to do raised crosswalks? Do we need to add better lighting? Do we need to do a four way stop? It would take a longer, but at the end of the day, we have to put an emphasis on pedestrian safety for the university and the entertainment area,” Niland said.

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