Pedestrian light at Camp Richardson turned off for holiday weekend
In response to concerns and complaints, the California Department of Transportation (CalTrans) has turned off a pedestrian hybrid beacon on California Route 89 at Camp Richardson through the upcoming weekend and July 4 holiday.
CalTrans installed the pedestrian hybrid beacon last fall as part of a water quality and roadway improvement project on California Route 89. A similar type of system was developed by the city of Tucson in Arizona in the late 1990s and, according to a press release from CalTrans, it has proven to be effective in reducing pedestrian crash rates and in compliance by motorists.
However, some motorists have been unfamiliar with how to respond to the beacon, especially when the lights change from a solid red light to a flashing red light, and increased back-ups were occurring in what’s already a congested area with high summertime vehicle and pedestrian volumes.
CalTrans has been adjusting timing plans to increase the efficiency of the pedestrian hybrid beacon. The department intends to continue to evaluate and adjust the timing of the lights and will be adding additional signs to help educate motorists. However, the decision was made to turn off the system through the holiday, and it was turned off on Wednesday, June 27.
Motorists traveling to Lake Tahoe over the weekend or for the Fourth of July are encouraged to use Caltrans’ QuickMap at quickmap.dot.ca.gov or download the QuickMap app on iTunes or Google Play for real-time traffic conditions. Motorists also can use the California Highway Information Network automated phone service by calling 1-800-427-ROAD (7623).
Travelers also can text “TahoeRoads” to 99000 to opt in to receiving text message updates on travel conditions in the South Lake Tahoe area.