Jaywalking Jackets

Philadelphia’s Roosevelt Boulevard is one of the most dangerous roads in the country. In recent months, several people have died trying to cross the road at night. Apparently they’re tempted to try to dodge speeders because multiple medians break up the perilous path. The big-budget fix of installing overhead walkways doesn’t seem likely, despite a nifty legislative proposal to use ticket money for funding. So how about a low-tech, low-budget fix? How about bright orange reflective vests night-crossers could wear? Life jackets for a different purpose. You station hangers on both sides. You put on your vest (complete with warning about how you’re nuts to try this, except at a traffic light when you’re crossing on the green) in hopes drivers will see you. On the other side, you hang it up for the next daredevil. Of course, that’s one danger: It could encourage thrill seekers, who’d make jaywalking, er, jaysprinting, into a sport. Which suggests an even more counter-intuitive idea: Increase the speed limit and wall up one of the medians, raising the risks higher than any jaysprinter could accept.    

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