The intersection of Hoover and Jefferson was subject of a Streetfilm last year.
Following the outcry after two USC students were run down in the Crosswalk at Hoover and Jefferson, the parents of one of the students, the one who was slain, demanded that the city "fix" this intersection. Some Streetsblog readers noted that this intersection already has one of the safest designs, a Scramble-crosswalk. Given that pedestrians are being mowed down throughout the city, is the LADOT really going to focus on this one intersection?
Never underestimate the power and influence grieving parents can have on the political system. The Daily Trojan reports that USC and the LADOT have worked on a plan to further improve the crosswalk. In the short term, speed sensors, repainted crosswalks and better lighting. In the long-term, we can expect either a pedestrian bridge or tunnel to completely separate motorized and non-motorized transportation.
However, would any of these changes really prevented the crash that killed Adriana Bachan last month? After all, if I were a USC student coming home from a party in the early morning, I would take my chances crossing at street level rather than walk into a tunnel where who-knows-what is waiting for me. Similarly, all the lighting and paint in the world isn’t going to stop a drivers so deranged that after carrying a student 500 yards on their hood they calmly get out of the car, remove the victim, and drive off. Yet, the article doesn’t mention any effort to increase traffic enforcement near campus.
All the engineering in the world can’t stop unsafe, uncaring drivers. While the LADOT and USC’s intersection plans may make the intersection safer, the only thing that is going to stop deranged drivers is better and more consistant enforcement of traffic laws. Police in the Valley seem to have already learned this lesson. It’s a lesson that should be carried city-wide.