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Summerside's 3D crosswalks don't 'jump out' as hoped, councillors say

Tori Buell, left, and Shania Ellis use the new 3D crosswalk on Central Street in Summerside on July 20.
Tori Buell, left, and Shania Ellis use the new 3D crosswalk on Central Street in Summerside on July 20. - Alison Jenkins

Some councillors are questioning the effectiveness of Summerside's almost complete 3D crosswalk project.

"I'm not noticing a whole lot of difference between a regular crosswalk and that one," Coun. Barb Ramsay said. "It didn't jump out at me."

The pilot project was discussed during council's monthly meeting at city hall on July 20. 3D crosswalks were recently painted at two intersections across the city. They're designed as an optical illusion to look as if they're hovering off the ground, prompting motorists to slow down.

Coun. Bruce MacDougall, who shared the update during a municipal services report, agreed that the crosswalks may not seem any different at first glance. But it depends on the angle motorists approach them because of how they're painted onto the road.

"When I was coming the other way, it had more of an effect," he said.


The two Summerside intersections that now have 3D crosswalks are:

  • Carol Avenue and MacEwen Road
  • Central Street and Maple Avenue

Plans for one more to be painted are in the works for somewhere near the Confederation Trail on either Greenwood Drive or South Drive.

Greg Gaudet, director of Municipal Services, said each crosswalk costs about $400. The majority of this cost goes toward paying city employees to work overtime on low-traffic days, such as on Sunday, as more time is needed to paint them.

The project required a few different colours of paint to achieve the 3D effect, including a grey paint to simulate a shadow. Coun. Brian McFeely speculated that perhaps this grey paint is too similar to the colour of the asphalt on the road.

Most councillors agreed that the project was worth trying out and that further discussion would help council to decide whether it's worth painting more in the future or not.

Daniel Brown is a local journalism initiative reporter, a position funded by the federal government.


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