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Posted on Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 5:58 a.m.

Pedestrian's death on Ann Arbor-Saline Road prompts questions of safety

By Kyle Feldscher


A pedestrian crosses Ann Arbor-Saline Road near Oakbrook Drive and Cranbrook Village on Monday.

Daniel Brenner |

The owner of several Ann Arbor shopping centers on Ann Arbor-Saline Road says safety improvements could be needed along the corridor after a woman was killed there Friday after being hit by a truck.

Tom Goldberg, owner of Woodland Plaza and Cranbrook Village along with other properties near Ann Arbor-Saline Road, said he’s concerned about pedestrian safety after the Friday-evening crash. A 70-year-old Ann Arbor woman was killed after the 6 p.m. crash near the intersection of Ann Arbor-Saline Road and Oakbrook Drive.

As the woman was crossing in an area without crosswalks, Goldberg said the installation of crosswalks on the road might be a possible way to prevent more fatalities in the area.

“We should look at things expeditiously,” he said. “Maybe more lighting or crosswalks, maybe lowering the speed. There are various ways to attack it and increase safety.”


The intersection of Ann Arbor-Saline Road and Oakbrook Drive on Monday afternoon.

Daniel Brenner |

The crash Friday was the third in two days that ended with a fatality. A 59-year-year-old Ypsilanti Township woman died Thursday after being struck by a vehicle on Golfside Drive in Pittsfield Township and a 19-year-old Ypsilanti Township man died Saturday from injuries he suffered in a Thursday morning crash on Hewitt Road in Ypsilanti Township.

Police from Ann Arbor, Pittsfield Township and Ypsilanti Township did not release more information on the crashes Monday. Ann Arbor police Lt. Renee Bush said the investigating officers on the Friday crash were out of the office Monday and she was unable to get more information on the investigation from them.

Sgt. Geoffrey Fox, of the Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office, was not available to provide more information on the Hewitt Road crash. Pittsfield Township Deputy Police Chief Gordy Schick did not respond to a request for comment.

Despite Friday’s fatal crash on Ann Arbor-Saline Road, Goldberg said he has not heard complaints from tenants at his properties about problems crossing the road.

Ann Arbor-Saline Road is four lanes, five in some spots with a center turn lane, with a speed limit of 45 miles per hour between Eisenhower Parkway and South Main Street. There are marked crosswalks at intersections with those two streets.


The pickup truck that struck a woman crossing Ann Arbor-Saline Road near the scene of the accident Friday night.

Melanie Maxwell |

Ann Arbor City Councilwoman Margie Teall (D-4th Ward) said residents hadn’t mentioned the stretch of Ann Arbor Saline Road between South Main and Eisenhower as a potential concern to her before Friday. She said she’ll be asking some questions of city officials after the woman’s death to try to see what can be done to improve safety in the area.

“I hope so,” Teall said, when asked if safety concerns would be brought to the council chambers. “It certainly is on my radar.”

Goldberg said he’s not an expert, but the fast-moving traffic in the area isn’t entirely conducive to pedestrians. With the growth of residential neighborhoods in the area, it may be time to look at ways to make the road safer for non-motorized traffic, he said.

“If not for the financial crisis, the whole traffic situation would have been much worse,” he said. “There were a lot of projects that were compromised or shut down because of the collapse of the housing market. My suspicion is you will see more activity on the west side of town and more traffic issues that will arise because of it. It’s very serious.”

Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for He can be reached at or you can follow him on Twitter.



Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 8:21 p.m.

It sucks to always be right. I said way back in April that Ann Arbor was going to have this issue of people getting hit because they think lines on the pavement will save them (bikers too)

Paul Wiener

Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 6:55 p.m.

Good idea, assuming the town will remedy about 800 other potentially dangerous crosswalks and intersections. Eliminating every striped crosswalk in town would be a great start.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 5:27 p.m.

People cross wherever they want, not necessarily where there is a crosswalk.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 4:58 a.m.

The city could just hire Boy Scouts 24/7 for a lot cheaper than pedestrian bridges. And why can't Kwame help some people cross the road to fulfill his community service requirements while he's in the area?


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 3:41 a.m.

Obey the law. Use crosswalks. Play chicken and the price.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 3:13 a.m.

Pedestrian bridges appear to cost about $1.5M depending upon the terrain. Dana Point CA built their gateway 'bridge to nowhere' for $6.7M with elevators. Spacious well-lit tunnels are better for kids and wheelchairs. For the on-sale price of a new library Ann Arbor could have built 40 pedestrian bridges/tunnels around town to save lives. Throw in the money not wasted on any more Plymouth Road type crosswalk disasters and declare bridges/tunnels to be permanent works of % funded art and Ann Arbor has suddenly become a much safer and noteworthy place to reside - once the bubbletown Crosswalk Law is voided of course. The UM has already built some architecturally significant pedestrian bridges. Maybe they could contribute some moving ideas for other parts of the campus, too. Why the city could even become a living gamer's place called "chutes and ladders in bubble paradise". Now there's a vision for the mayor.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 2:41 a.m.

Many of these comments are ignoring the pedestrian's responsibility to act responsibly and safely. We need anti-jay-walking laws,as some States and cities have. I feel very sorry for the not-at-fault driver, who has to live with the knowledge that a life may have been lost because he hit someone who was not paying attention, was jay-walking, or was wearing dark colors at night. Pedestrians need to be responsible for their actions. Not everything can be fixed by city hall throwing our tax money at it.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 12:57 a.m.

Darwin whispered in my ear and said we won't have this problem for too much longer.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 6:35 p.m.

Problem = people crossing the road.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 11:32 a.m.

Problem = colorblindness?

Bryan Ellinger

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 10:07 p.m.

To clear up some confusion: The HAWK light is on Huron at Third/Chapin. The lights on Plymouth are not HAWK lights. A HAWK signal can be activated by pedestrians with the push of a button. A flashing yellow light alerts drivers that a pedestrian is preparing to cross, followed by a solid yellow light alerting drivers to prepare to stop. The signal then changes to red, allowing pedestrians to cross. The lights on Plymouth are called Pedestrian Crosswalk Beacons, or Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons. (


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 12:57 a.m.

Screw the HAWK lights. I'm colorblind and I have no idea what is going on with them.

Cendra Lynn

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 8:56 p.m.

I don't consider the owner of housing projects to be an expert on public safety. Why not interview people who have been considering and working on this problem. The fact that a Councilwoman hasn't heard concerns about this is NOT INFORMATIVE. That is no data whatsoever. If she had heard something, that would be some information. But no news is not news and should not be in a news report. By now you should have the phone number of everyone in the City, public servant or citizen, who has been working on this issue. Talking to those people would be genuine investigative reporting. Writing about your dead ends is a cop-out which very much annoys this English Major and writer.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 5 a.m.

An expert is a person from out of town. They charge $20,000 to tell you exactly what people who live in the area have been saying for years.

Kyle Feldscher

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 9:34 p.m.

Cendra- I'll start by saying that I am working on a follow up story with more information from city officials who have been working on this area and have more to say about it. Those folks were not available yesterday due to Veteran's Day. The reason I talked to Margie and Tom for this story and not experts on public safety is I consider their input important: One is a man with a business interest in the area that attracts a lot of traffic, both on foot and by vehicle, and the other is an elected representative of the area in question. Both of these people have a vested interest in this particular area and could very possibly have heard concerns brought to them by residents, tenants or other people. The fact they said they hadn't heard anything regarding this area is relevant - it could show this is a rare incident, or possibly it could show this is the first incident in what's becoming a problem. You're right, more reporting is needed to show which of those two possibilities it is and that is why I'm doing a follow up story, which will be posted here tomorrow morning. I believe it's important to include all the aspects of my reporting - even when I ask questions I'm not able to get answers to - in my stories because it allows my readers to know I am asking the relevant questions.

Randall Webb

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 8:46 p.m.

I have to cross Ann Arbor-Saline road in that area on foot a few time per week, and I used to cross every day to get the bus. It is indeed a dangerous crossing. I may be foolhardy, as some comments suggest, but about to walk down to Eisenhower and back up the other side to get to a bus stop that is right across the street. I don't think a pedestrian island would be enough, and a bridge would be very expensive. What is needed is a pedestrian-activated traffic light that stops traffic with a red light, not just flashing yellow lights. When I was a kid in Baltimore, there was such a light on a busy street near my elementary school. I was allowed to cross there on my own starting when I was 8.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 7:15 p.m.

In general, I wish the whole stretch of Ann Arbor/Saline Road between Oak Valley (near Meijer) and Stadium Blvd. was a whole lot safer for pedestrians and bicyclists. There are very few sidewalks or cross walks. I constantly see pedestrians and bicyclists making dicey choices, because there are few sidewalks and crosswalks.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 5:54 p.m.

you can't put a cross walk on a 45 mph street without putting a traffic light in place. (well, you can, but don't expect cars to stop). It's called 45 mph, an average car (not an Suburban) will need about 170 feet to stop (including reaction time).


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 11:30 a.m.

If you are saying unmarked mid-block crosswalks are dangerous, i agree with you. If you are saying marked (i.e. lighted overhead sign) mid-block crosswalks with no pedestrian-activated light are dangerous, I agree with you. (Like the one on Washtenaw where the woman biker was recently badly injured.) If you are saying mid-block crosswalks with a pedestrian-activated light are dangerous, I don't agree with you. It's a light. It means stop. Drivers are supposed to be looking for lights that mean stop. How hard is that?


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 5:46 p.m.

It's a sad incident but until we know why this collision occurred it is too early to start talking about changing the roadway. Cross walk or not, if a driver is distracted by texting or any of the million gadgets cars come with these days, a pedestrian could still get hit. Like the one council member said, no one has brought up the area as a problem.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 8:45 p.m.

It could also be said .....Cross walk or not, if a pedestrian is distracted by texting or any of the million gadgets these days, they could still get hit.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 5:34 p.m.

What a tragedy for both the pedestrian and the driver. A raised crosswalk is really the only solution to that very congested area. Traffic moves swiftly and there is always a ton of traffic and congestion in the area. Adding those road crosswalks with blinking white lights would be a huge mistake. Drivers would end up jamming on brakes and rear end collisions would increase. Plymouth Rd is a good example of what happens when those crosswalks are added and drivers are expected to stop on a dime without warning. A raised overpass for pedestrians is the only appropriate solution for a heavily traveled area for autos.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 11:26 a.m.

I really don't get this argument. How is that you think it's fine to expect cars to stop for a red light, but it's nigh-impossible to stop for a pedestrian-activated signal? It's a light. It means stop. Drivers are supposed to be looking for lights that mean stop. How hard is that? I really don't think we can afford "elevated crosswalks" at $1 million each. (I also doubt they'd get used much.)

Matt Postiff

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:56 p.m.

I noticed two of the recent fatalities occurred around 6pm. I wonder what effect the time change had on this? It is now dark by 6pm, whereas just a few days ago it was not that way. People in their normal after work schedule, doing their jaywalking habit, might get away with it in daylight, but continuing that habit when it gets dark may be a recipe for disaster.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 5:35 p.m.

It's called incredible congestion at that hour and most hours of the day on that stretch of road.

Kyle Feldscher

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:48 p.m.

This has been a really great discussion on this tragic issue so far, I appreciate everyone weighing in. One of the things that I've been thinking about is the nature of this area. I drive through there quite often and rarely see pedestrians crossing the street. The high speed limit and large number of lanes gives the impression of a road that never intended to be used for pedestrian traffic. With the growth of residential areas in this corridor, is it time the city takes a look at changing the "culture" of Ann Arbor-Saline Road and making it more along the lines of South Main Street near Pioneer High School (lower speed limits, etc.)?

E Claire

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 5:32 p.m.

I think the lower speed limit would be the best option. I walk alot and find that 3 out of 4 cars do not stop for people trying to cross in a crosswalk. I'll be halfway through a road only to have cars in the next lane(s) keep going. This keeps me stuck in the middle of the road, one car waiting for me to get out of its path while others are flying by. I usually forgo the crosswalk and walk to a light if there is more than very light traffic.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:41 p.m.

I agree with putting an actual traffic light in at the entrance of the two roads (Northbrook and W. Oakbrook), and then making the REI entrance off of W. Oakbrook. This is a really dangerous area to walk and also to turn left at because the impeded sight caused by the hill. I think a normal cross walk would make it even more dangerous. A Hawk light could work but you still have the two entrances and people turning left that make that area so dangerous. Why not fix it all at once.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:36 p.m.

While the fatal pedestrain accident is tragic, the debate over adding more cross walks is on going. I live in that area and know that during rush hour times, it can be extremely difficult not only to cross the street but to make a left hand turning onto AA-Saline frm the east side of the street to head south. The interection on Eisenhower and AA-Saline is less than 1/4 mile or no more than two blocks south of the Oakbrook intersection. It would be wise for pedestrians to walk the extra couple of blocks and cross with the light. The entire stretch from Eisenhower north to where Main Street interect cannot be more than a 6 tenths of mile sandthere is a cross walk with traffic lights there for pedestrains. It would be wise for pedestrains to use extreme caution during peak traffic times, take the extra time to go to an intersection rather than keep adding more cross walks and assuming that is the fail-safe answer.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 8:46 p.m.

Agree. The location of the accident is a particularly dangerous place to cross. The speed limit is 40 or 45 (can't remember exactly) and there's a slight hill to the south (you can see it in the picture above) that limits a driver's ability to see someone crossing the road early enough. So, I wouldn't think a crossing would be a good idea there. As unfortunate as this accident was, it is only one incident and may not be indicative of a need to spend a lot of money on a pedestrian bridge, island, or whatever.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:01 p.m.

Invest in another Hawk signal for somewhere along that stretch, preferably one that would get them to the shopping center area. Football rules here but those people live there even when football isn't the main attraction. Why should the city treat this multi-lane road any different from Plymouth Rd.?


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 5:40 p.m.

Plymouth Rd has far less traffic and congestion than A2 Saline Rd and more students living on N Campus as well as sidewalks on both sides. A2 Saline Rd has 5 lanes and faster speed limits in addition to an entrance and exit to a major highway, I-94. Best option is an overpass for pedestrians, but there are no sidewalks on either side of A2 Saline Rd, as there are on Plymouth Rd. Pedestrians, after crossing A2 Saline Rd are stuck walking on the roadway and that is very dangerous. Not an area to add Hawk signals. Better to add an overpass for pedestrians.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:38 p.m.

Because there is far less of a student population and thus foot traffic.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 3:57 p.m.

A. "Tom Goldberg, owner of Woodland Plaza and Cranbrook Village along with other properties near Ann Arbor-Saline Road, said he's concerned about pedestrian safety after the Friday-evening crash." B."Goldberg said he has not heard complaints from tenants at his properties about problems crossing the road." Bulletin: Be on the lookout for the news agency which queries landlords and businesses about (1) general awareness and/or (2) the concerns of their tenants. ;-) Next: "Goldberg said he's not an expert, but the fast-moving traffic in the area isn't entirely conducive to pedestrians. " ––  One way to improve his "expertise" might be to have him try getting to his commercial properties on foot or on a bicycle. Next: ""If not for the financial crisis, the whole traffic situation would have been much worse," [Goldberg] said. –– In other words, we should be grateful for this Recession and to the people who caused it? Geez, happy thoughts people, happy thoughts! ;-) Next: A2 City Councilwoman Margie Teal said: "she'll be asking some questions of city officials after the woman's death to try to see what can be done to improve safety in the area. –– Meaning apparently, she's never tried to get to these areas on foot or by bicycle (and that "silence" from her constituents - to her means the problem has never existed over the past 30-40 years). Does anyone remember the controversy over "traffic calming" here just a few months ago? But I do think it's informative to have the views of these two disconnected individuals. Hopefully, Mr. Feldscher will soon dial up the Washtenaw Bicycling & Walking Coalition and get their somewhat better informed view of what it's like to be a pedestrian or cyclist hereabout.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 3:28 p.m.

I feel so sad for the person who died and her family. I think you need good cross walks as well as strong jaywalking laws that are enforced. Cities with enforced jaywalking laws do not have as many pedestrian fatalities. Another issue is the crosswalk from Huron High School across Huron Parkway. It needs the strobes. Two students in the crosswalk (where I was stopped) the car next to me just flew through. Please protect our high school students who are crossing to get to the bus stop or walk home.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 3:24 p.m.

Mr. Goldberg's opinion would carry more weight with me if he pledged some money to help improve the pedestrian infrastructure near his malls.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 8:47 p.m.

That's silly. What are you going to do start taxing business owners?


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 3:22 p.m.

Crosswalks only work if pedestrians use them. I've seen students all around campus crossing the street from areas where they are barely visable before they dart out from between two parked cars, either too lazy to walk to the crosswalk 20 yards away.

Rick Stevens

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 10:52 p.m.

The point all of you seem to be missing is that along AA-Saline there are few crossings and even those are scary. Please go to that area sometime and take a look at the situation. It's a pedestrian accident waiting to happen. Few crossings, very far apart. We're too car centered and pedestrians aren't considered or thought about very much - and it's apparent at AA-Saline. Someone lost their life in this, let's remember that and it wasn't from laziness...


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 6:23 p.m.

But they shouldn't have to drive defensively. The point is people are either too lazy or too ignorant to use crosswalks. You can't legislate against that.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:48 p.m.

Vehicular traffic around campus is usually traveling at much lower speeds (than Ann Arbor-Saline road) - allowing time for the 'defensive' driver to react safely when faced with an unsafe situation.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 3:19 p.m.

I live right at Northbrook and AA-Saline Road and there is not one safe place to cross the road - the AATA bus stop is across the street (where Oakbrook meets AA-Saline). If you need to get the bus going north, you have to walk all the way up to Busch's. OR you can walk down and cross at Eisenhower and go back north to the same stop at Oakbrook. The third option is to walk down to Panera and get a bus there. It's great more people are taking the bus, but we need to make it safer and more convenient. Either way is at least 1/4 mile, if not more. I would love to see a Plymouth road style cross walk here!


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:47 p.m.

Traffic comes in waves there. Some may last longer than others during rush hour times. It would be wise to allow extra time to cross in the middle of that stretch and then wait for the bus. The bus stop by Busch's offer the best option since it goes north and is immediately by a cross walk.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 3:13 p.m.

Personally I don't see the benefit from knee jerk reactions or google searched statistics to issues that have been going on since the first century. People walk out in front of vehicles all the time either by accident or even sometimes on purpose. It's been going on since the wheel was invented and I am sure even before that, people walked in front of horses or camels. People just need to be a lot more diligent, deliberate and careful around moving objects. Period.

E Claire

Mon, Nov 26, 2012 : 9:13 p.m.

Ok, so its 10 minutes rather than 5. Its just not a safe area to expect a vehicle moving at 45mph to stop. People are on their way to 94, to work, coming home from work. Put in a crosswalk and people will walk out in front of cars whether the car has a safe stopping distance or not. Guess what, the pedestrian loses every time.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 11:20 a.m.

Sigh. And comments strips out my fake tag indicating that the first sentence was sarcastic.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 11:19 a.m.

And who cares about the handicapped! It's not a 1/4 mile ... it's a 1/4 mile each way. Pedestrians are regularly demonstrating the need to cross the road somewhere near the middle between the lights. We should design the roadway to make that safer, even if that causes cars to slow down every once in a while.

E Claire

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 5:21 p.m.

Add one more to your total. I can't help but agree with you that what is needed is some basic common sense. Everyone is going on and on about having to walk an extra 1/4 mile to a light. I'm "middle aged" and I can walk 1/4 mile in about 5 minutes. Unless one is handicapped, this is not a big deal.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:43 p.m.

Seems like your views are only shared by myself re this article. We're in the minority on this one.

Joe Hood

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 3:02 p.m.

I would be in favor of a higher chance of rear end collisions and less pedestrian deaths.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:20 p.m.

A great perspective until someone is maimed or killed in a rear-end collision. How about a solution for BOTH problems.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 3:23 p.m.

Ah, perspective - refreshing!! :)

Ron Granger

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:52 p.m.

The city council has been in complete denial regarding pedestrian and bike safety in that part of town, and the Eisenhower/South State/I-94 area. "How do you cross the road? You run for your very life!" should not be the public policy, but it is.

Rick Stevens

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:11 p.m.

Ron, I don't agree with most of the time but you're on the mark this time. That entire stretch is absolutely a pedestrian / bike horror. No way to cross unless you walk at least a half mile and even then - with the light - you have traffic coming at you from different directions turning. It's like that stretch belongs to no one (A2, state, county?). It does belong to the car drivers and they act that way as well.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:36 p.m.

Two deaths in the City of Ann Arbor within the past 6 months of mature adults crossing multi-lane high-volume high-speed roads (Washtenaw Ave and Ann Arbor-Saline Road) suggests that we haven't done a very good job of figuring out how to manage safely BOTH pedestrian and auto traffic in such situations. With more housing being built near shopping areas, and with gas prices showing no signs of going down, it seems appropriate that Ann Arbor should be looking at solutions that protect the safety of pedestrians as well as bicyclists. It seems like an appropriate time for city council to get involved........AND to address the issue in a much more effective and far-sighted way than our current "local ordinance" regarding crosswalks--which has resulted in many accidents and near-misses, and, it is my understanding, also to the first of these two pedestrian fatalities.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:59 p.m.

There were 2 other pedestrian deaths as well: the man crossing Carpenter near Washtenaw and the man crossing Washtenaw east of US-23 towards Ypsi (I can't remember the cross road). Additionally, a young woman was hit near Packard and Hill Street over the summer, suffering major injuries, and the woman crossing on (with?) her bicycle on Washtenaw near the Recreation Center. Plus the middle school student crossing Newport near Miller as well as the pedestrians injured by a vehicular accident a couple of weeks ago near the intersection of Liberty and Ashley. Finally there was a man in a wheelchair who was hit by a driver on Liberty and Fifth.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:23 p.m.

If you know the area, it is not just seniors crossing here. There are families and young people everywhere in this area. It's very short-sighted not to have a lighted cross-walk here at this point. It's sickening that someone had to die for this to start being discussed.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:21 p.m.

People drive too fast these days. Always in a hurry. In less she stepped off the curb, he should have seen her.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:11 p.m.

"the area isn't entirely conducive to pedestrians" is an understatement. The road is a major artery into and out of downtown. Under the state laws governing how speed limits are set, I don't think there is a legal way to reduce the speed limit. A light or a pedestrian cross walk at Oakbrook might help. It is a long way between the light at Eisenhower and at S.Main. The only residential property not near a crossing light is Northbrook Dr and the businesses they would be walking to are not far from crossing lights.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:09 p.m.

Once again a pedestrian death Ms.Teal. Something does have to be done to solve that growing Ann Arbor problem. Roadways are the known domain of the vehicle. Sidewalks are the safe haven for pedestrians. To challenge those simple rules is to increase the risk of tragedy which is what is happening as congestion grows and pedestrians are wrongly told don't worry. Pedestrians still need to cross streets and cars still need to cross sidewalks. The Crosswalk Law tries to solve those competing needs by ignoring the known rules and making the pedestrian invincible in car territory. Which is about as bubbleheaded as it gets downtown - and at the UM. The tried and true road "rules" still work best for the rest of the USA. 1.NEVER walk/ride across a road until it is safe to do so. 2.Cross at a crosswalk and never against the lights. 3.YIELD to pedestrians when turning onto a sidewalk or crosswalk. 4.Yield to pedestrians in a crosswalk WHEN it is safe to do so. 5.STOP at red lights. Sidewalk islands in the road can help. Crosswalks with RED stop lights will help. Bridges and tunnels avoiding road congestion helps. Fewer more promenant crosswalks helps makes each one more visible. Teach all Ann Arbor pedestrians, riders, and drivers the "rules" Penalize all pedestrians, riders, drivers for violations.. Strike down the Ann Arbor crosswalk law and restore road rule sanity. Hold City Council directly responsible until the problem is solved.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 12:57 a.m.

Ticket pedestrians! Get tough on them!


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:50 p.m.

And we humans make mistakes, even the best of us. When mistakes involve death something needs to be done to help the people that make mistakes. We have the technology, why not use it?


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:44 p.m.

"Roadways are the known domain of the vehicle" In addition to motorcycles, bicyclists, and mopeds, per Michigan law.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:37 p.m.

Jaime, you are incorrect. Quote the state law if I am mistaken. The state laws like most others have common sense crosswalk wording which acknowledge the road rule logic. Ann Arbor code goes beyond that by forcing drivers to watch the sidewalk for crosswalk activity. That is not part of their road domain responsibility. When pedestrians normally step into a crosswalk "legally" it is only after they accept that they can do so safely in every other USA place except Ann Arbor and UM campus.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:14 p.m.

LXIX, The crosswalk law is a state law but few people are aware of it and few places enforce it.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:06 p.m.

I live right there, and yes, it's a dangerous place to cross. Sometimes you have to wait a long time to turn there in a CAR. But sometimes accidents are just accidents. Something happening once doesn't mean something needs to be fixed. A light there or crosswalk would be a mess. It may seem like a long walk to Eisenhower (though it really isn't) but the drive time from there to the Oakbrook-Northbrook intersection is really short. To put another light there would freeze traffic. And that's not even on football Saturdays. You can cross there. You just have to wait. Wait till you can't see any cars coming. Though if they must do something, a pedestrian island there with the turn lane might be the best for drivers and pedestrians. That way you're only having to cross two lanes at a time.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 3:26 p.m.

There is no AATA bus stop going north near Whole Foods. You either walk down to Panera, or back up AA-Saline road to the Oakbrook stop. A light-up cross walk there (like on Plymouth) would be as beneficial as the ones on Plymouth and would not impede traffic often.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:03 p.m.

An observation - it's about 500 yards to the Eisenhower crossing and 700 yards to Main St., so yes, that is some extra walking to get to the crosswalks. But the thing is, all the things that one would cross the street to get to are near the Eisenhower or Main intersections anyway. So I'd maintain that you really aren't walking that far out of the way.

Richard Carter

Mon, Dec 3, 2012 : 8:25 p.m.

It ain't the kids I'm worried about. The woman who died was, I believe, 70. That neighborhood has a very diverse age group from what I know.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 9:47 p.m.

If the high school kids can walk a mile to get to their bus stop, I have trouble feeling too bad about a quarter mile walk. Life isn't always convenient.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 3:27 p.m.

I live right at Northbrook and AA-Saline Road and there is not one safe place to cross the road - the AATA bus stop is across the street (where Oakbrook meets AA-Saline). If you need to get the bus going north, you have to walk all the way up to Busch's. OR you can walk down and cross at Eisenhower and go back north to the same stop at Oakbrook. The third option is to walk down to Panera and get a bus there. It's great more people are taking the bus, but we need to make it safer and more convenient. Either way is at least 1/4 mile, if not more. I would love to see a Plymouth road style cross walk here!


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:33 p.m.

Hmm...good point. Would be interested in what those who live around there have to say about that.

Roy Munson

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:55 p.m.

Spend a million dollars on a pedestrian overpass and watch people too lazy to use it jaywalking all day on both sides of it. People jaywalk all the time downtown 10-20 feet from stoplights.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:42 p.m.

Sorry Roy, not every pedestrian can climb the 20 to 25 feet to the top of the overpass. Stick with an island and hawk light.

Bob W

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:32 p.m.

Very true.

Jim Mulchay

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:54 p.m.

Is the 45mph limit on Saline-AA enforced? How many speeding tickets were issued on that stretch of Saline-AA in 2011? And how many accidents in 2011? How does that compare with Jackson Road, Washtenaw, State Street and North Main, Plymouth Road? While I don't spend a lot of time driving in AA I see almost as many U-M Public Safety vehicles "on the road" as I do AAPD - and police vehicles generally do have a "traffic calming" influence. Maybe more AAPD visibility along this stretch (I know - there is no manpower because there is no money). Coming north on Saline-AA it seems (to me) that this stretch is where people make up for the time they lost at the lights between Meijer and Eisenhower. Probably the best solution for pedestrians is one of these "hawk" lights or adding a stoplight. I'm not sure, but haven't we had pedestrian fatalities now on Plymouth, Washtenaw and now Saline-AA in the last few years?


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 1:01 a.m.

Speed limit is actually 50 in a small part.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 3:02 p.m.

I drive this stretch every day. It is difficult to reach the speed limit during high traffic times due to the number of vehicles on the road. I almost never go 45 mph. Usually I am driving somewhere between 35-40 mph. I don't think speeding is the issue here. This shopping complex has become very popular and a HAWK signal crosswalk with an island is needed.

Some Guy in A2

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:38 p.m.

In my experience, I have seen far more drivers going less than the speed limit on this stretch than those who go over it. I sincerely doubt there is a "real" issue of speeding here--this is simply an issue of no reasonable and safe place for pedestrians to cross.

Bertha Venation

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:53 p.m.

What about a few of the HAWK cross walks like on Plymouth Road?


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 11:14 a.m.

The ones on Plymouth Road are not called HAWK lights. They cost $15k each. The one at Huron and Chapin/Third is a HAWK light. It costs $100k. I think it's probably more cost efficient and equally effective to go with the former over the latter.

Scott D

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:53 p.m.

I understand that crossing without a crosswalk is dangerous. But a pedestrian crosswalk in this area would be a great improvement for people that live in this area. It is over a 1/4 mile to the nearest crosswalk. They already have them on the other major area roads (Washtenaw, Plymouth).

Jojo B

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:52 p.m.

I live in the area and have read many of the comments on this thread. There definitely is a problem here. Many pedestrians want to cross at Oakbrook and Northbrook, but it is very dangerous. A2/Saline is a very busy road with poor lighting and the nearby traffic signals seem to be unfortunately timed to rarely have a clear break for pedestrians to cross safely, especially during rush hour. Solutions and thoughts: 1. Install more lights. A simple and obvious way to help. This stretch of Ann Arbor/Saline is extremely dark and underlit compared to the nearby neighborhood streets. This is surprising for such a busy artery between the highway and downtown. It's almost shocking that standard lights are missing here. 2. Make a pedestrian crosswalk with or without lights. Very questionable for anybody's safety. I can see lots of rear-end collisions as people driving at 45mph slam on their breaks to avoid hitting a pedestrian walking slowly and obliviously across the road. 3. Create a pedestrian bridge. Good idea for some if it could be handicap accessible. Our neighborhood has a lot of old folks homes so anything that doesn't help them doesn't help the neighborhood. 4. Tell people to cross at Eisenhower or Busch's. Yeah right! Those intersections are 1/4 mile and 1/2 mile away. That's not realistic. 5. Install one of those middle safety islands like by Main and Oakbrook. That's a pretty good idea if it can be put in a spot that still allows turns. 6. Install a traffic signal at Saline and Oakbrook/Northbrook and make this an intersection proper. I don't know if this has been suggested by anybody else, but it seems obvious to me. With all of the extra growth and traffic going through the Whole Foods/REI mall, bus lines, not only is this intersection scary for pedestrians, but it's scary for any driver who wants to make a left hand turn onto the main road, especially during rush hour. Traffic lights would solve it all.

Ann English

Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 12:03 a.m.

Even the current Ann Arbor-Saline Road bridge over I-94 has had its share of accidents due to darkness; years ago, during the Christmas season, I was caught in a traffic jam on Ann Arbor-Saline Road after leaving Meijer. When I finally arrived at the wreck, it was just as dark there as on either side of it. I don't know if darkness right there for bridge traffic has been taken care of; remember, the park-and-ride lot is right there, and is yet another place where motorists get on and off Ann Arbor-Saline Road.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:02 p.m.

If you're driving out of Cranbrook shopping center to Ann Arbor-Saline, I'm recalling there is a "no left turn permitted" sign. I've gotten caught by that, so now I always make sure to leave by Eisenhower.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:32 p.m.

I agree with 1/3/6. I think a pedestrian crosswalk at that intersection will cause many accidents, unless the speed limit is reduced.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:51 p.m.

"Goldberg said he's not an expert, but the fast-moving traffic in the area isn't entirely conducive to pedestrians." That makes sense - it's a "suburb," which practically by definition implies roads, cars and few sidewalks. Our solution to what happened here should not be to lay crosswalks all over the suburbs of Ann Arbor. Rather, we should be stressing to people: 1.)Look both ways. 2.)Exercise caution when crossing streets. 3.)Drivers should remain vigilant of anything coming from off the road, onto the road (e.g. people, deer).


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:47 p.m.

How about a "road diet"? They like to say that they don't hamper traffic, so doing it on a main thoroughfare for football traffic shouldn't be a problem, right? Never happen.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:40 p.m.

I see people scampering accross this stretch almost every day and it always looks dangerous. Would one or two pedestrian bridges be helpful?


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:27 p.m.

Yesterday I was driving down Plymouth after dark, and a pair of walkers wearing only dark clothing were in the crosswalk. They didn't press button to trigger the flashing lights, and they didn't even look up at the traffic, which had not yet come to a complete stop, as they crossed. People have to remember that the law might be in their favor, but if you don't take reasonable steps (no pun intended) for your own safety, the law won't protect you from a driver who didn't see you.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:24 p.m.

Jef Peck is right on the money. While they may be more costly in the short run, pedestrian overpasses are the way to go. This city claims it wants to be friendly to foot traffic and cyclists. It could make a great deal of headway in this direction if it invested in pedestrian overpasses in certain parts of the city. Why is this never mentioned as a possibility, I wonder?


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 11:16 p.m.

Kyle, Not sure but the stream in that area may cause flooding issues.

Kyle Mattson

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 8:38 p.m.

gretta1- I'm noticing this idea more often in the comments; however, as others have mentioned there are concerns that other have mentioned worth considering such as cost, height restrictions, and disabled accessibility. Personally this section of road seems more suitable for a pedestrian tunnel, but it would probably have the same issues as a bridge, particularly cost.

Concerned Party

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:20 p.m.

This maybe a unpopular opinion. Ann Arbor pedestrian laws are too lax. I drive a taxi in Ann Arbor. Every night I have at least 10 people or bikes that jaywalk any given road without even look up in most cases. In the case of bikes few obey traffic signs or signals. At least 5 or 6 time a night I stop on green lights to let pedestrians who are to ignorant to know what the don't walk symbol means. Yes it is nice to have a city where pedestrians have the right away. However if they used crosswalks then it would be a safe city. I have never seen a police officer give a ticket or warning for jaywalking. Why. Safety goes both ways. It is sad that someone died. But this city has some out of control pedestrians and bike riders.

Richard Carter

Mon, Dec 3, 2012 : 8:21 p.m.

I agree in all three directions -- those idiot cyclists that make the rest of us look bad sure need to get some tickets when they drive at night with no lights on and ignore traffic lights. But also, the idiot drivers who don't yield to pedestrians need some, as well as the pedestrians you mention.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 3:33 p.m.

While I often "jaywalk", I never do so when I might impede a vehicle. I would actually have no problem with police citing jaywalkers that impede traffic. But if you're talking about getting tough on people who cross when there are no cars in sight, I would vehemently disagree.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:25 p.m.

This is true. As a pedestrian and a driver I see that drivers have no regard for pedestrians outside of downtown and pedestrians have no regard for drivers within the downtown area. It's a little crazy, actually.

Linda Peck

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:14 p.m.

I am asking City Council to please consider putting hawk lights at the very least and not simply crosswalks. People are not able to see these crosswalks easily and they fade with time. I think these crosswalks are really dangerous, especially at 45 miles per hour. They work best in a midtown situation, not on a major thoroughfare where people are just not looking down at the street. Also, it seems that people driving cars are less likely to be able to see at that angle than an SUV or truck.

Linda Peck

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:33 p.m.

L'chaim, I have written to City Council and the Mayor, in fact just days before this latest accident, voicing these concerns. I have received replies from everyone I wrote to except two, and they also expressed concern. I hope they will go forward with concrete changes. I will write again with my specific suggestions, though. Thank you for reminding me of this.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:31 p.m.

The Hawk light at Huron and Third is missed by drivers several times a day. The liGhts are easily safer than nothing but pedestrians still need to wait till all four lanes stop before they venture out. Plus Huron is only 35 mph, and AA Saline is 45. They need to make the red longer on Huron as if all four lanes don't stop at once, the pedestrian needs to wait till they are sure all four lanes stop. This takes extra time. I would also get rid of the blinking red at the end of the light. Just have steady red the whole time it is on. I have seen drivers start on the blinking red with people still in the street.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 3:29 p.m.

I agree. Are you 'asking' council in a formal way? Are you organizing and can others help your efforts in any way?


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:11 p.m.

It's sad we think we can legislate our way out of every tragedy. Just last night on the way home from Ann Arbor at 11pm at night there was a bicyclist wearing dark clothing and no lights riding on the side of the road. Sometimes people make decisions like that which are not the smartest. You can make things a bit safer by adding lights, a crosswalk and a signal but who's to say the next person will still not use the crosswalks that are there and cross a little further down the road? Ultimately we're all responsible for our own safety and we can't depend on the design of the road to always keep us safe from other motorists. I keep reading these types of articles and I can't believe there's no such thing as an accident anymore. It's always somebody's fault.

Richard Carter

Mon, Dec 3, 2012 : 8:18 p.m.

I'm getting annoyed with the way bicyclists seem to be held to a higher standard every time anything about driving or walking comes up. Once in a while you come across an idiot biker. How many times a day do you come across an idiot driver speeding, tailgating, cutting lanes, failing to yield? And yet there's always the "I saw a bicyclist being an idiot last week. Therefore, they should have their rights stripped."

Woman in Ypsilanti

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 7:33 p.m.

While it is true that ultimately we are all responsible for our own safety, it is also true that good road design can really make things better. I really don't understand why people resist such improvements.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 3:38 p.m.

What kills me is that the biking groups keep complaining they want the same rights as a car when they are on the roads, but yet I seen plenty of them just go through the stop lights, no reflectors on the bike and no reflective clothing. I don't go to A2 that often but I am familiar with the area that this happened in. If they can't put a simple cross walk in that area with pedestrian activated lights, then how about taking some of that ART money and build a pedestrian bridge over the road. Won't snarl any traffic but yet the pedestrians will be able to gt across the road very easily.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:27 p.m.

Ditto. Was going to UM game last night and there was a bicyclist (teen) riding in the dark, all dark clothes, no light or reflector. I was lucky the spokes caught my eye before I turned out. It also seems that street lights seems farther and fewer between.

Glen S.

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:05 p.m.

It may be just a coincidence, but I can't help wondering if any of these accidents is related to the Michigan DOT's recent decision to raise speed limits on local roadways -- in many cases, against the wishes of local communities, and residents.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 5:12 p.m.

Not a coincidence. These accidents happen when people walk out in front of moving vehicles.

Basic Bob

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 2:01 p.m.

No, research shows that the cars are not driving faster just because they change the signs. I think it has more to do with the greater number of seniors living in apartments on busy roads across from shopping centers.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 12:27 p.m.

Crosswalks on that road would be a disaster without a light. I don't understand why they put flashing white lights on the new crosswalks, which mean nothing to most drivers, instead of red ones, which mean "stop" to everyone. A pedestrian bridge would be better, but probably too expensive and doesn't meet ADA requirements. If they put in a crosswalk, it should include a traffic island because crossing half of the street safely is much easier than the whole thing.

Ann English

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 11:23 p.m.

Agree on the traffic island; whenever I exit Woodland Plaza turning LEFT onto Ann Arbor-Saline Road, I always have to get into what's left of a left-turn lane for OUTBOUND traffic wishing to turn into Woodland Plaza. Then, in the middle lane of Ann Arbor-Saline Road, I wait for traffic in the next two lanes to clear. If a motorist can't cross more than two lanes at a time on that road, certainly a pedestrian cannot do it. Not even Washtenaw Avenue at Arlington is this hard to turn left onto; I can usually cross three lanes there without waiting for traffic to clear. An island for pedestrians is very similar to a left-turn land for motorists: a place to stop while traffic is coming from your right.

Bryan Ellinger

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 10:05 p.m.

To clear up some confusion: The HAWK light is on Huron at Third/Chapin. The lights on Plymouth are not HAWK lights. A HAWK signal can be activated by pedestrians with the push of a button. A flashing yellow light alerts drivers that a pedestrian is preparing to cross, followed by a solid yellow light alerting drivers to prepare to stop. The signal then changes to red, allowing pedestrians to cross. The lights on Plymouth are called Pedestrian Crosswalk Beacons, or Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons. (


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 7:42 p.m.

If the Hawk lights aren't working, how about a STOP sign? The HAWK lights are a courtesy to motorists, not pedestrians. They credit the motorist with enough intelligence to slow or stop for pedestrians. I can't see much happening on this stretch of road though as it's main function is as a game day traffic exit corridor used 6 times a year.

Jake C

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:32 p.m.

They're tinted yellow, not white, and the HAWK signals along Plymouth Road in Ann Arbor do a remarkable job of getting drivers to stop for pedestrians, especially when compared to before the HAWK signals when maybe 1 car in 50 would actually stop to let the pedestrians cross. A full-on pedestrian crossing light would be a good idea too (like the one near the YMCA) but I believe HAWK signals are significantly less expensive and near as effective.

Jeff Pek

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 12:09 p.m.

If the city is really serious about pedestrian safety, it would build some pedestrian bridges, and get people out of traffic completely. Strangling vehicular flow just isn't a practical solution -- that area is already congested enough without ratcheting things down even further.

Barb's Mom

Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 12:11 a.m.

@thinker--and the road level one they put in on Carpenter turns and it would not be wheelchair friendly either so how does that fit with the ADA. I have worked with people in motorized wheelchairs. I know it takes more room for them to turn than what I see in the pedestrian island that they put in on Carpenter Rd.

Ann English

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 11:03 p.m.

On Monday, I got my first look at a pedestrian bridge over Middlebelt Road, between 7 Mile and 8 Mile Roads; I know it was built for students at the nearby Clarenceville School there in Livonia, but it took up much less space than the pedestrian bridge that used to span our Plymouth Road for students coming from Leaird Street or Jones Drive. This bridge in Livonia is easy to see from blocks up Middlebelt.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 9:04 p.m.

@barb's mom-pedestrian bridges are not required by the ADA, therefore would not be built, as they are too expensive. Therefore, handicapped would have to have a street-level crossing.

Yael Ganet

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 6:06 p.m.

Ht. clearance would be an issue on any thoroughfare coming into town.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 5:04 p.m.

Yes, I can see a bridge with winding ramps so all can cross-walkers-joggers-power chairs! I would rather spend the money for something like that than a new library or expensive art work. Power to the people!


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:05 p.m.

Your assumption is that everyone who walks can climb a 25 foot flight of stairs?

Ghost of Tom Joad

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:42 p.m.

thank you!

Stephen Lange Ranzini

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:37 p.m.

Sorry. I meant to write, "Where will the money come from for that?"

Stephen Lange Ranzini

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:36 p.m.

@Jeff Pek: Pedestrian bridges are very expensive. Between $1 million and $500,000 I think? Where will the money come for that?

Barb's Mom

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:20 p.m.

@thinker, they can build pedestrian bridges with ramps. It has been done before.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 12:55 p.m.

The elderly, handicapped (remember those?), and mothers with strollers couldn't use pedestrian bridges. So think again.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 12:30 p.m.



Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 12:22 p.m.

Excellent idea! City council take note.

Stephen Lange Ranzini

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 11:55 a.m.

Since there currently is no crosswalk on the entire stretch of Ann Arbor-Saline Road between Eisenhower Parkway and Main Street, I do think there ought to be a crosswalk at the Oakbrook/Northbrook intersection. This will be required ultimately anyway, because the city plans to build Oakbrook all the way to State Street as part of its master highway plan (only a small section in the middle is currently missing to do that.) However, putting a crosswalk in there without pedestrian activated flashing lights would actually increase risk to pedestrians and motorists. Lastly, to improve pedestrian amd motorost safety generally citywide, we need to have city council repeal the current pedestrian crosswalk ordinance & replace it with one that conforms exactly to what the signs say, "stop for pedestrian in crosswalk.". We are putting people at risk of serious injury by having an ordnance different than the model state law. More generally, because U-M is our economic base, we must be careful to avoid any decision that cuts corners on public safety. Think like a parent. Would you send your kids to college in a city that has public safety issues? Fire safety, police safety and road safety all need to be good or better to continue to keep U-M on the lists of attractive places to go to college.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 9:21 p.m.

Thank you both @Ranzini and @Woman in Ypsilanti for starting to provide details. Let me take you each in turn. @Woman in Ypsilanti: If the pedestrian was already in the crosswalk, then the state law and city law would apply equally, right? But more importantly, I APPLAUD YOU for stopping. We need more drivers like you! And I agree with you that we need better enforcement. @Ranzini: Witnessing the aftermath of an accident is different than witnessing the accident itself and thereby having first-hand knowledge of the sequence of events and possible causes. If someone was hit while in the un-signalled crosswalk, then what difference between the state and city laws caused the accident? Both laws state that drivers must yield for someone already in the crosswalk. The city law also stipulates a pedestrian cannot enter the crosswalk if it would not give drivers enough time to come to a safe stop.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 8:40 p.m.

Nonsense. Putting a crosswalk on a busy road like the Ann Arbor Saline Rd and asking drivers to stop when someone enters said crosswalk is nonsensical. People need to use common sense and learn not to cross busy road after dark.

Woman in Ypsilanti

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 7:29 p.m.

@Peregrine, I actually witnessed a near accident at a crosswalk earlier this week. I was on Huron Street in the left lane. I saw a pedestrian waiting to cross so I stopped. The traffic in the right lane, however didn't stop. After around 10 cars whizzed past me on the right, the pedestrian finally saw a break and started to cross. A car in the right lane actually speeded up and honked. The pedestrian heard the honk and luckily manged to jump back on to the curb in time but it was really close. All of this happened just a couple of blocks from the police station. If the AAPD is not going to actively enforce this law, it really does create problems because drivers are not going to get with the program. I was feeling really guilty too because I think that pedestrian started to go because I had stopped and maybe she felt like she was holding up traffic or something. I don't know. I do know that when I am a pedestrian I choose not to cross at crosswalks because I would rather wait for traffic to actually clear than to sit there while some people stop and most others don't.

Stephen Lange Ranzini

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 6:36 p.m.

@Peregrine: I have personally witnessed both accidents and many near accidents caused by the confusion. Luckily the young lady hit by the car just before I arrived on the scene on Huron St. and Thayer St. lived. Speaking of which, that intersection needs a cross-walk and pedestrian activated flashing lights, too!


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 6:11 p.m.

I'm going to stick a question in here. If someone is attempting to cross the street near (a few feet) the HAWK crosswalk but not in the crosswalk, does the driver need to stop? I see this frequently on Liberty near Stadium (by the church) and don't think I'm suppose to stop. Or am I suppose to stop?


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 5:27 p.m.

Speaking of supporting your argument with nonsensical points, can you name one pedestrian that the "waiting at the curb" element has saved or nearly saved?


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 5:20 p.m.

@Ranzini: Name one accident or near-accident that the requirement that a car yield to someone on the curb waiting to enter the crosswalk has caused. Why do you feel privileged to make nonsense assertions to support your points?

Stephen Lange Ranzini

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 4:30 p.m.

@Peregrine: The ordnance is different from what the signs state. That is dangerous! The disconnect then causes uncertainty about how drivers and pedestrians will react and that is causing accidents and near accidents.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 3:37 p.m.

The Ann Arbor ordinance does say you have to stop for people in crosswalks. It adds that you must stop for a pedestrian waiting at the curb to enter the crosswalk, which I agree with. That addition does not put "people at risk of serious injury" as you state. Rather than make assertions, please explain your thought process.

Stephen Lange Ranzini

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:28 p.m.

@Barb's Mom: Agreed!

Barb's Mom

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 1:27 p.m.

Stephen, I agree with the crosswalks with the signals, but then people have to use them. They put in a cross walk with the signals on Carpenter road by American House. On Saturday a couple was crossing in it but they didn't bother to push the button to activate the lights. Luckily it was daytime so they could be seen but if it would have been 6 pm like these accidents, then that would have been a different situation. Also, what is with putting all these cross walks at bus stops so the buses stop right in the cross walk. That is very poor planning.


Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 11:39 a.m.

What does it mean for the driver when it states that the pedestrian wasn't crossing at a cross walk? How does that affect that charges, if any, that are brought up? I hope that changes are made to the area. More lighting is good and clearer marked spaces for pedestrian crossing may help so that this doesn't happen again.

Steve Hendel

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 11:31 a.m.

What solution, easy or otherwise, will stop someone from taking their life into their hands? It's a sad situation.

Alan Goldsmith

Tue, Nov 13, 2012 : 11:26 a.m.

"I hope so," Teall said, when asked if safety concerns would be brought to the council chambers. "It certainly is on my radar." Ms. Teall spent time making sure Plymouth Road was a Kafka-like series of blinking crosswalk lights so it's refreshing now something in the 4th Ward is on her radar. Perhaps now, with the close Democratic primary vote in August, she has more time for actual neighborhood concerns.