Score one for downtown Redding pedestrians.
Caltrans and the city of Redding recently made two changes at the intersection of East and Tehama streets, next to Shasta Regional Medical Center. Both changes are good for people who aren’t steering 4,000 pounds of steel.
First, motorists going northbound on East Street may no longer turn right on a red light at Tehama. Second, Caltrans has modified the signal timing so that pedestrians get a head start and can establish their position in the crosswalk before the traffic signal turns green.
If you’re unfamiliar with the area, these changes might not seem like a big deal. But if you’re ever walked around near the hospital – and a lot of people are on foot while visiting or working at the hospital or nearby offices – you know how hazardous this intersection can be.
Just east of the intersection, Tehama Street becomes the State Route 44 freeway. Naturally, drivers get going pretty fast through here. Meanwhile, northbound East Street motorists intent on getting to the freeway as quickly as possible watch eastbound Tehama Street traffic intently while looking for an opening. This causes the East Street drivers to lose track of pedestrians, according to Caltrans and Redding police, and there have been a number of close calls.
No more. East Street drivers can cool their heels for a moment while waiting for the light to change – and for pedestrians to get all the way across the street.
“When making a right turn after the signal turns green, motorists are still required to yield to pedestrians already in the crosswalk before proceeding,” the Redding Police Department advises.
Turning right on red where prohibited can earn a motorist a moving violation ticket with a $225 fine.
• Speaking of highways … Repairs to the Pit River Bridge on Interstate 5 are complete and traffic is back to normal.
• And speaking of Shasta Regional Medical Center … Congratulations to SRMC Chief Nursing Officer Cyndy Gordon for being named recipient of the 2011 Excellence in Leadership award for Northern California from the Association of California Nurse Leaders.
• Never too early to party … This year’s late date for Easter means Mardi Gras festivities don’t officially get rolling until early March. (Fat Tuesday is March 8 this year.) But Soroptimist International of Redding doesn’t want to wait and has scheduled its 39th annual Mardi Gras celebration for 7 p.m. to midnight this Saturday, January 29, at the Redding Convention Center. Music, dancing, games, prizes and the naming of the king and queen are all part of big evening. Tickets cost $10 and are available in Tri-Counties Bank inside Raley’s, at Kuebler’s Furniture on Churn Creek Road, and at Edward Jones Investments, 1537 Placer Street. Sorry, no kiddies. You must be 21 to attend. Click here for more, including biographies of the event’s community service king and queen candidates and how to vote for them.
Paul Shigley is senior editor of California Planning & Development Report, a frequent contributor to Planning magazine and is old enough to attend Mardi Gras. He lives in Centerville. Paul Shigley may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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