My guess is that you generally ignore Yield to Pedestrians signs.
Even if one is placed in the middle of Lincoln Memorial Drive or prominently at the Riverwalk, you probably see it but ignore it and let the walkers wait. Most do. I’m not judging.
I don’t ignore these signs. Yet, usually when I stop at them I get a finger or honk from the car behind me. Whatever, dude. I’m in the right, you’re being a jerk. OK, jerk’s a bit strong. But really, stop for the pedestrians. You’re not in that much of a hurry.
Great cities are built for people. Yes, cars, streetcars, busses, buildings, etc. are vital, but cities need to first function on a walkable, human scale. Thus, it’s important to find ways to soften traffic and for us to stop for pedestrians. Obeying the law, of course, also is important.
Maybe my passion around pedestrian safety stems from my Downtown lifestyle. I lived on Wells St. in Downtown Milwaukee for nearly a decade and saw how cars disobeyed signs and stripes and consistently put pedestrians at risk. It made me not only fight for better signs and enforcement, but also to get the street changed to two-way traffic.
I love my car and drive it well and fast. So, maybe since I consistently break the speed limit laws while obeying the stop for pedestrian laws I’m a bit of hypocrite. Whatever.
My point here is please stop for pedestrians. And, when you’re walking be smart and don’t tempt traffic. Great walkability makes for a better city and that’s something we can all cheer for.
A life-long and passionate community leader and Milwaukeean, Jeff Sherman is a co-founder of OnMilwaukee.
He grew up in Wauwatosa and graduated from Marquette University, as a Warrior. He holds an MBA from Cardinal Stritch University, and is the founding president of Young Professionals of Milwaukee (YPM)/Fuel Milwaukee.
Early in his career, Sherman was one of youngest members of the Greater Milwaukee Committee, and currently is involved in numerous civic and community groups - including board positions at The Wisconsin Center District, Wisconsin Club and Marcus Center for the Performing Arts. He's honored to have been named to The Business Journal's "30 under 30" and Milwaukee Magazine's "35 under 35" lists.
He owns a condo in Downtown and lives in greater Milwaukee with his wife Stephanie, his son, Jake, and daughter Pierce. He's a political, music, sports and news junkie and thinks, for what it's worth, that all new movies should be released in theaters, on demand, online and on DVD simultaneously.
He also thinks you should read OnMilwaukee each and every day.