Pedestrian crossings and crossing points
We maintain all pedestrian crossings in Cheshire East. We are also responsible for putting in new crossings and crossing points.
Report a pedestrian crossing issue
You can report pedestrian crossing issues online.
Report a pedestrian crossing issue
Pedestrian crossing features
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Wait times for lights to change
Sometimes it can take several minutes for the lights to change after you press the button. This does not mean there is a problem.
We design the timings for each set of lights to fit the circumstances of the particular crossing.
Where there is more than one set of traffic to control, we programme the lights to give each set of traffic a turn. So if you press the button just after the pedestrian green man has finished, you will have to wait until each set of traffic has had a green light before there is another turn for pedestrians.
Another reason it can take longer than you expect for the lights to change is that we sometimes set a delay between the end of the traffic green light and the start of the pedestrian green man. We do this to reduce the risk that drivers will still be trying to get through the lights when pedestrians start to cross.
Beeps and signal cones
Tactile spinning cones and beeping signals are provided at signal controlled crossing points to assist partially sighted pedestrians in crossing the road.
Tactile spinning cones are underneath the right hand push button unit at all crossing points within Cheshire East. This cone spins when the green man signal to cross is showing, when you feel it spinning then it is safe to start crossing the road.
Audible beeps are also provided at many of the crossing points within Cheshire East. The beeping sounds when it is safe to start to cross the road. Not all crossing points have a beeping sound. Some crossing points are too close to others. At these locations the beeping sound could cause confusion as the beep may be for a nearby crossing and not the crossing where you are waiting to cross.
We have started to install ‘Smart’ detection at crossing points. This allows you to just hold your hand underneath the right hand push button for a second or two in order to demand the crossing. At some crossings you can also demand the crossing from an app on your phone, just search for the sm@rtcross app.
The waiting time following pressing the button varies from site to site. At crossings the maximum waiting time is set to no more than 30 seconds during the busiest periods of the day. At junctions the pedestrian waiting time can be up to 90 seconds.
The green man time is usually set to 5 or 6 seconds. The green man is only the invitation to start to cross the road. It is not the time allocated to cross the whole of the road. Typically, the green man time is sufficient to allow you (if you were to start to cross as soon as it appears) to get just over half way across the road.
Once the green man goes out there is a period when the traffic and pedestrian signals are all on red. This allows you to cross the rest of the carriageway safely. On some crossing points there are detectors which can extend the ‘all red’ time when the controller sees that you are still crossing.
Tactile surfaces to help people with visual impairments
To help visually impaired people, we're adding tactile surfaces to the pavement at crossings and crossing points. These surfaces have a pattern of small domes. At zebra crossings or crossing with lights, the surface is red. At other crossing points with dropped kerbs or pedestrian refuges, the surface is buff. At crossings with traffic lights, the surface leads you to the push button.
On shared cycle tracks/footways, we use ladder/tramline paving to divide the cycle track and footway.
Types of crossings
Zebra crossings are the simplest type of crossing. They are effective where traffic isn't too busy and where it's easy for people and drivers to see each other.
Puffin crossings have the red/green man display in a box by the button. This means you face towards the oncoming traffic as you look at the display, which is safer than looking across the road to a display on the other side. There's no flashing green man stage. Some puffin crossings have sensors that tell the lights to stay red for cars for longer is someone is crossing slowly or to cancel the crossing request if the pedestrian goes away or crosses before the lights change.
Toucan crossings are like puffin crossings, but are designed for both pedestrians and cyclists. You'll usually see them where cycle paths cross roads.
Pelican crossings have red/green man signs on the far side of the road. We are replacing all our pelican crossing with puffin crossings.
New pedestrian crossings and crossing points
We can look at putting in new pedestrian crossings, crossing points (for example, safety refuges and dropped kerbs) where there's a clear need.
When we get a request for a new pedestrian crossing or crossing point, we consider a number of things. These include:
Where a crossing isn't suitable, we'll see whether there's anything else we can do to help..
Use our online report form to tell us where a new crossing might be needed.
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Page last reviewed: 04 August 2023
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