City Testing Solar-Powered Crosswalks
Cleveland Heights installed one outside of Lee Road Library, and another will be added soon
Cleveland Heights residents may have noticed a new crosswalk outside of Lee Road Library.
The city has several non-intersection crosswalks around town, but this one is different from the rest on Coventry, Euclid Heights and Cedar.
The signal is powered by solar energy, and the device does not blink constantly like others around town.
Alex Mannarino, public works director for the city, said pedestrians must push a button to activate the lights that outline the diamond crosswalk sign. This catches the attention of drivers better than ones that operate all the time, he said.
“The way it flashes, it catches your eye,” Mannarino said. “People get used to the other crosswalks.”
The devices were installed Thursday and ready by Friday, he said, and they help people walk from the parking lot to the main branch of the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Public Library safely.
Once activated, the sign flashes for about 50 seconds.
Mayor Ed Kelley said the location of the Lee Road Library crosswalk and the second one that will be installed and chosen soon were selected because they both have heavy pedestrian traffic.
“What we’re doing is we’re putting two of these in two of the most highly-visible crosswalk areas to test them, and if they work and continue to add to the safety of the city, we’ll continue to add more,” Kelley said.
Mannarino said that the crosswalks cost between $4,000 and $4,800 for a pair, and Kelley said the project was no more than $10,000.
Both hope they improve safety for residents in a city voted one of the most walkable in Ohio.
"Instead of spending all that money, we’re testing them and will make a decision whether we want to put more in," Kelley said.