New report gives Denver low marks for pedestrian safety on city streets

DENVER -- The City and County of Denver was given low marks when it comes to the safety of its streets, according to a new report card released by safety advocates.

The safety advocates with the Denver Streets Partnership the city an overall “C“ grade for the its progress on the Vision Zero Action Plan, which was designed to improve the safety of Denver’s streets.

The progress report looked at the city's 2018 infrastructure goals in eight categories. The city failed to meet its goals for sidewalks constructed, traffic calming work, and street lighting enhancements, the report said.

59 people died on Denver’s streets in 2018, the second highest number of fatalities since 2005, highlighting that Denver has a long way to go to meet its vision of zero deaths on its roadways.

Denver police reported 60 traffic deaths in 2016 and 51 deaths in 2017.

"We have got to find a way to make pedestrians a priority in our streets. We need to use the streets!" said Pam Jiner, the walk leader for Montbello Walks.

The city is making steps to improve though. In some areas of the Montbello neighborhood, a pedestrian refuge island was installed at Albrook Drive and is a visual cue to slow down.

The island also features flashing lights to allow drivers to better see the pedestrian.

It wasn't all bad news for the city though, the report said that city met its goals for making more bike lanes and improvements at major intersections, such as the timing of traffic lights.

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock introduced the Vision Zero Action Plan in 2017 with the goal of eliminating traffic deaths and serious injuries by the year 2030.

You can view the full Vision Zero Progress Report Card here.

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