|[Actually, no. A crosswalk is a crosswalk.]|
Here's the main point of my piece:
I have this thought each time I see a bike route that relies only on a green sign, or a sharrow painted on the pavement. These kinds of design approaches pale in comparison to traffic calming, where you're actually narrowin the street, putting in a traffic circle, or installing speed bumps.
In writing, one of the oft-repeated rules is "show, don't tell." I think a similar ruel could exist for urban design. Instead of putting up a sign that says "watch for pedestrians" or "Speed Limit 30", you want to design a street that makes it obvious that pedestrians are all around, and that makes it highly uncomfortable to drive fast. You don't want to tell people to drive slowly and carefully, you want to make spaces where that is the obvious way to behave.
While there are some examples of useful educational campaigns, I fear that, for the most part, these are simply ways to keep graphic designers employed. Good street design should be self-evident.