A leading pedestrian interval (LPI) gives pedestrians a 3- to 7-second head start on a walk signal before the parallel car traffic is given a green light. This simple, low-cost adjustment has been demonstrated to lower pedestrian-on-vehicle crashes by 13%. In 2022, CalBike advocated for a measure that will expand the use of LPIs (the recently passed AB 2264).
Expensive, flashy infrastructure projects often attract the most attention, but equally, if not more important, are simple, low-cost solutions that deliver results to every day road users. The fact that many residents don’t even notice the change to intersections actually speaks to the effectiveness of the measure. State law mandates LPIs at Caltrans-controlled intersections, but local planners should also implement this critical safety measure because it’s a simple step to help combat the rise in pedestrian fatalities.