Skip to Content
Streetsblog USA home
Streetsblog USA home
Log In

A Crosswalk Too Far: The Hunt for America’s Least Crossable Street

Good luck walking to church on North Military Trail in West Palm Beach, if you happen to start on the other side of the street.

Last February, Streetsblog readers determined the worst intersection in America. Then you pinpointed a suburban area with streets so windy and disconnected, it would take a seven mile trip to travel between two houses that shared a back yard. And for two years running you've helped shame the nation's most parking-scarred downtowns.

But there's a special class of shame-worthy street we have yet to fully examine -- and they haunt all corners of America. We're talking about the street with an enticing destination on the other side, but no access, no crosswalk, no safe way to get across. A street that separates more than connects.

Put in this position, a rational person would just make a dash for it rather than walk as much as half a mile out of the way. But that decision can also put you in danger. And that's the problem.

With some help from our readers and Twitter friends, we've put together a little collection of these divisive streets. Please share your own examples in the comments or send them to angie [at] streetsblog [dot] org.

Cincinnati: MLK Boulevard at Vine Street

Here's an unfortunate scenario in Cincinnati. A key stretch of Martin Luther King Boulevard operates much like a moat. On one side of the street visitors to the University of Cincinnati stay at the Hampton Inn. Almost directly across the street is University Commons -- a park area designed to be a "contemplative space." Wouldn't it be nice if visitors had access?

But to do that, they have to walk approximately a quarter mile out of the way:

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 2.53.23 PM

West Palm Beach: North Military Trail at Annette Street

This submission comes to us from the excellent Florida Massacre Twitter account, which pointed us to West Palm Beach's dreadfully isolating North Military Trail. Amazingly, this uncrossable barrier is right next to Northwood University.

If you want to walk from Dollar General on North Military to Papa John's pizza across the street, you'd have to travel 1.36 miles out of your way to access a crosswalk. Yeesh.

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 3.23.27 PM

Cleveland: Carnegie Road at East 9th Street

Carnegie Road in Cleveland is dreadful. Running just south of downtown, it is so frequently interrupted by highway exits, it's more of a high-speed off ramp to somewhere else than a part of the city. Chris Stocking singled out this area -- Carnegie by East 9th Street -- for its utter un-traversibility.

Were one to walk from the Hilton Garden Inn Downtown to the popular Aladdin's Restaurant on the other side of the street, the journey would be nearly a quarter mile.

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 3.00.58 PM

Raleigh: Capital Boulevard

This one comes to us from David Edmondson, who first blogged about the lack of crosswalks on this nine-lane suburban thoroughfare in 2011. Crosswalks are spaced about 0.3 miles apart on this stretch of Capital Boulevard.

It looks like this road is a nightmare to cross on foot. To get from America's Best Value Inn, on the west side of the street, to Starmount Mart on the east, you'd have to walk 0.28 miles.

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 3.39.19 PM

Got a good example in your own town? Shoot an email to angie [at] streetsblog [dot] org.

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Streetsblog USA

When Victims Die More Than 30 Days After a Crash, They Don’t Count

Nearly a thousand people every year aren't included in federal crash death totals because they didn't succumb to their injuries quickly enough. What will it take to make them count?

June 24, 2024

Monday’s Headlines Get Money

President Biden's proposed budget includes billions for transit but even more billions for roads. How will Congress react?

June 24, 2024

Get to Know Your MPO: An Advocate’s Guide to Some of Our Most Critical Transportation Agencies

The Metropolitan Planning Organization can have an outsized influence on local transportation decisions. Here's what every advocate needs to know about how they operate — and how to win them over.

June 24, 2024

Federal Judge Sets Aside a Key Congestion Pricing Lawsuit

Gov. Hochul's rationale for killing congestion pricing took another blow on Thursday as a federal judge dismissed one of the major lawsuits against it.

June 21, 2024

Friday’s Headlines Are Supercommuting

Why are so many Americans schlepping to work for 2+ hours in a car these days?

June 21, 2024
See all posts