Kauffmann Presents for Walk Bike Nashville

24 / June / 2020

Barge Design Solutions’ Peter Kauffmann (PE, PTOE, AICP) participated as one of six panelists during Walk Bike Nashville’s online presentation, How to Fix our Impossible Crossings.

Walk Bike Nashville is dedicated to safe streets and healthy transportation options. This discussion, focused on intersection and crosswalk design, was the latest in a series supporting their campaign Vision Zero Nashville. The goal of Vision Zero is to see that no one will die from or become seriously injured in a traffic crash by implementing awareness campaigns and advocating for safer roadway designs which improve the travel experience for everyone, not just pedestrians and cyclists.

“As a bike commuter I know the dangers facing non-auto users every day, and as an engineer I understand there are design decisions we can make to help create safer corridors,” shares Kauffmann. “While this particular conversation centered around crosswalks and intersection design with a focus on pedestrians, designing safe and effective roadway networks that serve all users is a constant priority in my work and in Barge’s Transportation group.”

The 105 attendees, including several Metro Nashville Council members, heard from engineers and planners representing state, municipal, and private sector perspectives, gaining insight into proven safety countermeasures, most notably warning devices like Pedestrian Hybrid Beacons (PHB).

A case study presented during the session from a peer city demonstrated that PHBs, also known as HAWK signals, result in driver compliance rates as high as 97%, causing a significant reduction in pedestrian-involved crashes. The same study showed that these highly effective safety devices can be implemented in cost-effective ways without compromising on safety. Techniques may include swapping out costly, overhead mast arms for more economical sidepost mounting and avoiding complicated connections to the power grid in favor of modern solar powered controllers.

Panelists emphasized the importance of educational forums such as this to garner support for pedestrian safety initiatives, concluding that cities often have the tools to improve safety, and only need the funding and political support to move forward with these changes. Kauffmann shares, “With the right resources, there is nothing ‘impossible’ about building safer streets for all users.”

Kauffmann, Traffic Project Engineer with Barge, is certified as both a Professional Traffic Operations Engineer and a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners and is a Professional Engineer (DC, GA, KY, AL, OH, TN, MS, FL).