Pedestrian Safety Campaign

Working together to make the City of Roanoke a pedestrian-friendly city

Pedestrian safety is very important to the City of Roanoke. Pedestrian and vehicle conflicts in our city streets are frequent, and although crashes resulting in severe injuries are rare, the common near-misses or close calls make our residents feel uneasy especially when crossing the street.

Use the menu to learn more about the campaign and click below to get involved.

Get Involved

The Roanoke Pedestrian Safety media campaign ended on September 30, 2020. We will continue to spread the word on pedestrian safety with our social media and infrastructure projects. The campaign’s final report is available here.

Download Final Report

Featuring Luanne’s Rife Story

Art Contest

Color Your Corner | Roanoke Pedestrian Safety Art Contest

The City of Roanoke is accepting submissions for the Color Your Corner Contest. Five selected artists will have their artwork installed on a signal cabinet in Roanoke for the community to see!

Artwork submissions must meet the following criteria:

  • Original artwork
  • Incorporates the message “Every Corner is a Crosswalk” in a positive way
  • Highlights the diversity of Roanoke’s neighborhoods and people
  • Cannot mimic a regulatory sign
  • No offensive wording or images
  • No nudity or violence
  • No promotion of any business or product

The City retains the right to remove the art for any reason.

The art contest is closed. Thanks to everyone who submitted a design. The Roanoke Arts Commission will assemble a panel to select the five winners of the contest. Stay tuned for forthcoming announcements.

Contest Details

  • Artists and people who care about traffic safety are encouraged to submit artwork. Submissions by people of all ages are welcome.
  • Initial submissions can be a rough sketch submitted by the end of September 2020
  • Each of the five selected artists will receive a $200 stipend. All installation costs will be covered by the City.
  • The sketch does not need to be the final artwork, but it should be detailed enough that the selection committee can get an idea of the artwork.
  • Selected artists will have an opportunity to refine their sketch upon selection. Artists are welcome to use the signal box artwork template for the design if desired. Final artwork will need to be rendered to fit on the signal box artwork template and reproduce on vinyl wrap for installation.
  • Please include a written description of your artwork on the online form, include your process including media and what, if any, aspect of the work was done digitally
  • Five proposals will be selected by a panel assembled by the Roanoke Arts Commission.
  • The selection panel will follow the City of Roanoke’s public art procedures, evaluating submissions for an overall presentation of originality, artistic merit, presentation of the message, and suitability for the context. The group of selected proposals will reflect the diversity of Roanoke’s neighborhoods and people.
  • Neighborhood-specific illustrations are encouraged.
  • Artists will be notified in October and will be provided with guidance about the final artwork needed upon selection.
  • The final artwork will be installed with vinyl wrap on five signal cabinets in the winter or summer of 2021 (based upon funding sources).

Download the Signal Cabinet Dimension Template: Signal Boxes Sizes

The submission deadline is September 30, 2020.

Reach out to Andrea Garland at andrea.garland@roanokeva.gov or 540-853-2676 with any questions.

Campaign Materials

  • Campaign Videos

    The Roanoke Pedestrian Safety Campaign kicked off on July 17 with a Facebook Live Event. The event included videos from local and national organizations with a variety of pedestrian safety tips and historical tidbits. These videos and more are shared here Take a look and help to spread the word by posting and sharing the videos, using #RoanokePedestrianSafety

  • Campaign Graphics

    Use our campaign graphics to help spread the word

    Memorial Bridge Image

    Memorial Bridge – Download

    In Virginia, every corner is a crosswalk whether it's painted or not. Drivers: Stop at the corner. Pedestrians: Cross at the corner.

    St Andrews – Download

  • Yard Signs

    Every Corner is a crosswalk yard sign

    Every Corner is a Crosswalk yard sign at Moorman Ave NW

    “Every Corner is a Crosswalk” yard signs were used as an engagement tool during the duration of the pedestrian safety campaign. The City of Roanoke staff will be picking up yard signs that are in City right-of-way during the month of September.  You are welcome to keep your yard signs for as long as you’d like, but we ask you to remove them from City right-of-way.

    If you want to return your yard sign please contact Andrea Garland at andrea.garland@roanokeva.gov to pick them up.

  • Campaign Press Release

    Posted on: July 14, 2020

    The city of Roanoke Launches “Every Corner is a Crosswalk” Pedestrian Safety Campaign

    The goal is to reduce vehicle crashes involving pedestrians;
    Virtual kickoff event planned for Friday, July 17

    More people venturing out as the economy reopens means more summertime pedestrians on the city’s sidewalks and streets. But that also increases the chances of pedestrians being struck by vehicles. It’s more important than ever to pay attention to pedestrian safety, and so the City of Roanoke this week is launching a new pedestrian safety campaign: “Every Corner is a Crosswalk.” The goal is for people who drive to follow the law and stop for pedestrians at painted and un-painted crosswalks and for pedestrians to be predictable by crossing at the corner or a designated crosswalk throughout Roanoke. Read More

Campaign Details

About

In the City of Roanoke, too many pedestrians are hurt or killed in crashes with cars. To help decrease pedestrian-involved crashes, the City of Roanoke applied for and received a Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles grant to create a citywide pedestrian safety campaign. The eight-week campaign will run from July 13 – September 4 with the goals of:

  •       Reducing the number of crashes between vehicles and people walking
  •       Increasing compliance with Virginia state law at crosswalks for both drivers and pedestrians

Campaign Targets

Click here to see a map of where there were pedestrian-involved crashes between 2014 and 2018.

Campaign Plans

The Roanoke Pedestrian Safety Campaign included a mix of paid media and community outreach to reach people who live or work in the City of Roanoke. Campaign materials aimed to increase awareness of an important part of Virginia law: that in Virginia, every corner is a crosswalk, whether it’s painted or not.

Campaign materials included:

  • The radio
  • TV
  • Valley Metro buses
  • Berglund Center Marquees
  • Communications from City agencies and local businesses
  • Yard signs and posters throughout the community

Campaign Final Report

The Roanoke Pedestrian Safety media campaign ended on September 30, 2020. We will continue to spread the word on pedestrian safety with our social media and infrastructure projects. The campaign’s final report is available here.

Download Final Report

For Drivers

Stop for Pedestrians to help prevent crashes

Crosswalk Law for Drivers

Virginia law requires people driving to stop for pedestrians in the crosswalk, whether it is painted or not. Drivers may be more familiar with painted crosswalks, but they should know that every intersection (or corner) is a crosswalk whether it is painted or not. VA Code 46.2-926

How People Driving Can Prevent Crashes:

Be aware

  • Be aware of your surroundings and always on the lookout for pedestrians (especially children) on the side of the street. Be prepared to slow down and stop should a pedestrian step into the road.

Look for people crossing the street before turning right or left

  • Before turning right or left, look for pedestrians and stop for them.
  • When turning right on red, come to a complete stop and scan for pedestrians. Only proceed when it is clear.

Stop for pedestrians at all crosswalks, and remember some crosswalks are not painted

  • When in doubt, consider that just about every corner in Virginia is a crosswalk. While some crosswalks are painted, many are not.
  • Stop for pedestrians who have a “Walk” signal and anyone in a crosswalk. Drivers must stop even if the pedestrian is crossing once the “Walk” signal has expired.

For Pedestrians

Cross responsibly to help prevent crashes

Crosswalk Laws for Pedestrians 

Virginia law says that pedestrians have the right of way in crosswalks and at intersections. However, the law also says that pedestrians should never step into the crosswalk (painted or not) if there is not enough time for a driver to stop. While painted crosswalks are easy to see, unmarked crosswalks are not. Unmarked crosswalks exist wherever streets intersect, at the corners of the street. VA Code 46.2-924

How people walking can prevent crashes:

Be predictable

  • Cross at the corner or designated crosswalk. Drivers won’t expect you to cross mid-block without a crosswalk, and you may be held accountable for a crash if you are not in a legal crosswalk.

Expect the unexpected

  • Look both ways for right and left-turning vehicles before you cross. Cross only when it is safe to do so.

Always cross at the corner, rather than mid-block

  • If there is not a painted crosswalk mid-block, don’t cross there. Walk to the corner and cross there instead.

Follow the signals

  • Use the pushbuttons to cross, when they are available. In Roanoke, some push buttons trigger “Walk” signals and others trigger green lights which give you the right-of-way to cross the street in the same direction of the traffic flow. 
  • Always look both ways before crossing the street.

Contact Us

If you have questions or concerns about this campaign or pedestrian safety in your neighborhood, contact Andrea Garland at the Transportation Division at andrea.garland@roanokeva.gov, or 540-853-2676

Related Updates

The City of Roanoke is working on several infrastructure projects to upgrade pedestrian facilities throughout the city.

This is Luanne Rife’s story, whose life was forever changed after being struck by a driver while walking in a crosswalk.

New Crosswalk Signal Downtown Roanoke

Pedestrian Safety Action Plan

The following intersections will be improved with pedestrian pushbuttons and countdown beacons, ADA and paving marking upgrades

  1. Bullitt Avenue SE and 9th Street SE
  2. Williamson Road NW and Epperly Avenue NW
  3. Williamson Road NW and Truman Ave NW
  4. S Jefferson Street and Bullitt Ave SW
  5. Campbell Avenue SW and 3rd Street SW
  6. Elm Avenue SW and Franklin Road

The following intersections in Downtown Roanoke will be upgraded with audible pedestrian countdown beacons.

  1. Campbell Avenue and 1st Street
  2. Campbell Avenue and 2nd Street
  3. Church Avenue and 1st Street
  4. Franklin Road and 1st Street
  5. Franklin Road and 2nd Street
  6. Jefferson Street and Salem Avenue
  7. Jefferson Street and Campbell Avenue
  8. Jefferson Street and Church Avenue
  9. Jefferson Street and Franklin Road
  10. Salem Avenue and 1st Street
  11. Salem Avenue and 2nd Street
  12. Williamson Road and Campbell Avenue
  13. Williamson Road and Church Avenue
  14. Williamson Road and Franklin Road

A new Rapid Rectangular Flashing Beacon will be installed at the intersection of Williamson Road SE and Bullitt Avenue SE

Leading Pedestrian Intervals

FAQ

The Roanoke Pedestrian Safety campaign aimed to decrease pedestrian-involved crashes by raising awareness about an important Virginia law: that every corner is a crosswalk, whether it’s painted or not.

Prior to the campaign, the City of Roanoke staff looked at where crashes between vehicles and pedestrians have happened and found that many pedestrian-involved crashes are related to crosswalks. Check out the Campaign Targets section below for more detail.

VA Code 46.2-924 is the law that applies to this campaign. Parts of the law can be difficult to understand and remember, and we know that the majority of pedestrian-involved crashes in Roanoke happen when pedestrians cross the street. The campaign Every Corner is a Crosswalk aims to simplify VA law into something that is accurate, catchy, and easy to remember. The finer points of the law apply to just about every intersection in Roanoke, so when in doubt, remember: every corner is a crosswalk.

The Virginia definition of a crosswalk is consistent with most other states and has been in place for decades. There is a new law pertaining to crosswalks, which changes the requirement for drivers to “yield” for pedestrians in crosswalks to “stop” for pedestrians in crosswalks.

  • A T-type intersection (also known as a three-legged intersection), is where one road terminates at an intersection with another road.
  • The “every corner is a crosswalk” law applies to all T-type intersections in Roanoke, requiring that drivers stop for pedestrians whether there is a painted crosswalk or not.

Monday, August 31, 2020

Yard signs can be placed in the grass, near sidewalks or the edge of the street, or near an intersection in your neighborhood.

Feel free to keep your yard sign up for as long as you’d like! When you are done with it, please contact Andrea Garland at andrea.garland@roanokeva.gov and she will pick it up.

  • For the campaign planning and design, the team analyzed all reported pedestrian-involved crashes that occurred in the City of Roanoke between 2014 and 2018. For that 5-year period, there were 172 reported pedestrian crashes including 13 fatalities.
  • In 2019 there were 43 pedestrian-involved crashes including 2 fatalities
  • Through June 30, 2020, there have been 19 pedestrian-involved crashes including 3 fatalities.

Get Involved

Download Final Report

While you’re here…

We are currently seeking community feedback for the following projects. Please take a minute and share your ideas!

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2020-11-02T17:44:16+00:00
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