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Hints for Successful Business District Improvements
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Additional Information

Create a Thriving Business District


Marked crosswalks can enhance pedestrian access and safety in your district. However, the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) must consider several factors before marking a crosswalk.

  • Does the location have a traffic signal?
  • Is it along recommended walking routes for elementary school children? (SDOT has maps showing these routes.)
  • Is it at an intersection with no signal where the amount of pedestrian/vehicular traffic and the configuration of the area make the use of a marked crosswalk desirable for directing pedestrians to the preferred place to cross the street?
If the location does not meet the above criteria, it might not be a good place for a marked crosswalk. Sometimes changes to visibility, lighting or a change in the route pedestrians take (for instance, by moving a bus stop) can result in a more comfortable crossing situation. Additionally, consistent use of the crosswalk by pedestrians is an important factor in increasing driver compliance. Some alternatives to crosswalks include:

· Parking restrictions · Police enforcement · Curb bulbs at intersections · Median islands · Increased lighting · Pedestrian controlled signals · Relocation of bus stops to safer place on block

Frequently asked questions:

Who do we call to request a crosswalk evaluation or other pedestrian safety improvements?

Call the Walk and Bike Hotline at 206-684-7583 or e-mail SDOT will inspect the area, review the location, identify the problem and determine an appropriate solution.

Who do we call to get a worn crosswalk repaired?

Call Walk and Bike phone line at 206-684-7583. If the crosswalk has been marked in the last few years and is worn (some marked crosswalks are being purposefully phased out), SDOT will inspect the site to verify condition.
All re-marking is done in the summer and school-related crosswalks have priority.

Why won’t the Seattle Department of Transportation mark the intersection we told them about?

Installing a marked crosswalk at some locations may actually increase the danger to pedestrians. In other situations, there is an existing crosswalk in close proximity to the proposed site. SDOT will decide whether or not a marked crosswalk is a good solution and explain the reasoning to you.

Benefits and challenges of a marked crosswalk:


  • Identifies pedestrian area and directs pedestrians to the preferred crossing location.
  • Alerts motorists to expect pedestrians in the crosswalk.


  • Does not ensure that drivers will stop for pedestrians at crosswalks, either marked or unmarked.
  • Can provide little or no benefit to pedestrians if it is located in the wrong place.