CDOT Revising H.A.W.K. Pedestrian Signal at 12th Street

August 8, 2012 - Southwestern Colorado/CDOT Region 5 - DURANGO – The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) is changing the timing on its High Intensity Activated Cross-Walk (HAWK) signal at the Main Avenue/12th Street intersection to better coordinate with other traffic signals along U.S. 550/Camino Del Rio.

Since CDOT activated the HAWK signal last year, pedestrian activity has greatly increased and its use is up dramatically.  The increase in traffic stops and the repeated traffic stops at certain times of the day due to the HAWK have created unsafe backups on Main and Camino Del Rio, especially during commuting hours.

“Because it changes almost instantaneously, it doesn’t allow the traffic to properly clear, which has been creating backups north and south of 12th,” said CDOT Traffic Engineer Mike McVaugh.  “We’re changing the timing so it’ll coordinate with the other signals in Durango.  It’ll now hold pedestrians and bicyclists for a short period until there’re gaps in the traffic, allowing for a safe crossing as well as eliminate the big backups.”

The maximum wait time a pedestrian or cyclist will have is approximately 120 seconds before getting the walk symbol.  This will be identical to missing a crossing time and having to wait for the next crossing opportunity, much like the regular signalized intersections at 9th and 14th streets.

“It’s crucial to change the signal now since pedestrian and bicycle usage will climb sharply in about 10 days when the Pro-Cycling Challenge is in town,” added McVaugh.  “Motorized and non-motorized traffic will be at its peak so it’s essential we do what we can to minimize those impacts.”