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More pedestrian-activated traffic signals coming to Phoenix

Phoenix is planning to add more traffic signals to improve pedestrian safety.

HAWK stands for high intensity activated crosswalk. It’s designed to stop traffic and allow pedestrians to safely cross, often mid-block. 

Unlike other traffic signals, HAWKs only operate when a pedestrian pushes the button. A flashing yellow signal appears overheard before turning yellow to alert drivers to pedestrians. When the light turns red, all drivers are required to stop and when the red light begins flashing, drivers can proceed *if the marked crosswalk is clear.

Phoenix currently has about 20 HAWKS citywide and plans to add them at:

  • 43rd Avenue and Hubbell Street.
  • 3rd Avenue and Buckeye Road.
  • Northern Avenue and Arizona Canal.
  • 7th Avenue and Western Canal.

On Wednesday, the City Council approved acquiring property necessary to install HAWKs, whether through donations, purchase or by using eminent domain. According to a council report, “Improvements include striping, signals, lighting, curbs, gutters, and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant sidewalks and ramps.”

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As a senior field correspondent, Christina Estes focuses on stories that impact our economy, your wallet and public policy.