Learnin’ The Barnes Dance

A lot of cities have them. Other cities have tried them.

And apparently as of next spring, Toronto will get a couple of of them.

I’m about three weeks late to this because I was too busy moping, but I’m talking about scramble intersections, which stop vehicle traffic in all directions to allow pedestrians to cross the road any way they want – across, diagonal, whatever.

(A couple articles for reference can be found here and here.)

Expected pro: a safer way for pedestrians to get across intersections, and drivers can make turns a lot more safely.

Expected con: longer waits for the light to change for said pedestrians.

As a pedestrian who feels like she has to stare down drivers making turns to get their attention, this is brilliant. The freedom to cross the street and not have to worry about getting ploughed down? Who doesn’t love that?

Call me silly, but for some reason, I’m willing to bet that on the first day these new scramble intersections are sprung into action, there’s going to be that one guy that walks into the middle of the intersection and stands there, just to piss people off.

Or even better: sometime during the first week, someone organizes a flash mob of people to do something crazy while people have the right of week.  (Okay, so maybe the idea is about three or four years ago. But c’mon – how cool would that be?)

Anyway, check this example of a scramble intersection in Shibuya, Japan. Interesting sight, I say.


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