Salt Lake City is dedicated to improving travel on roadways and protecting public health, safety, and welfare. To this end, the city is committed to improving conditions for those who choose to travel by any and all modes.
Learn about the Adopt-A-Crosswalk program, HAWK signals, and the Pedestrian and Bicycle Master Plan.
Sidewalk snow removal, repairs, and landscaping encroachments.
Read more about walking and pedestrian safety from transportation agencies and advocates.
Neighborhood Byways create pleasant, safe, and convenient routes for people using active transportation.
The idea is simple. Place a container of flags at each end of a crosswalk and instruct people walking to carry one with them while crossing. The brightly colored flags improve pedestrian safety by making them more visible to drivers. In addition, the simple act of holding a flag alerts drivers that the pedestrian intends to cross the street. Some drivers have commented that simply having brightly colored flags at both ends of a crosswalk makes noticing the crosswalk easier.
Salt Lake City installs and maintains the crosswalk flags within the Central Business District downtown. Within the rest of the City, the Adopt-a-Crosswalk program allows individuals or businesses to install and maintain crosswalk flags at a nearby crosswalk by “adopting” or “sponsoring” the crosswalk. Sponsors agree to occasionally monitor the flags to ensure they are available at both ends of the crosswalk and to provide replacement flags as needed. In return, the City installs the flag holders, and an initial supply of flags at no cost to the sponsor. Replacement flags are available to sponsors from the City at a nominal cost. For elementary schools that wish to sponsor a designated school crosswalk, the City provides replacement flags at no cost as long as the school agrees to maintain them.
For additional information about the Adopt-a-Crosswalk program, consult the Crosswalk Flag brochure or contact the Transportation Division at 801-535-6630.
Pedestrian HAWK Signals
HAWK is an acronym for High Intensity Activated crossWalK. This type of pedestrian signal originated in Tucson, Arizona in 2000 and has up to a 97% driver compliance rate. Since then, this type of signal has been approved and adopted into standard traffic engineering manuals throughout the United States.
While different in appearance to the driver, to the pedestrian this signal works the same as any button-activated traffic signal. It stops traffic with a red light to allow pedestrians to cross safely. Although it looks similar to a traditional signalized pedestrian crossing, the HAWK functions a bit differently. When not in use, it will remain dark. But when a person pushes the button, the signal goes through a sequence of five movements. First, the signal begins flashing yellow to indicate to drivers someone intends to use the crosswalk. It then goes to solid yellow like a typical traffic signal, advising drivers to stop. The signal then turns solid red, requiring drivers to stop at the stop line. Finally, the signal goes to flashing red, letting drivers know that after coming to a complete stop, they can proceed with caution if the way is clear – the same movement they would make at any other flashing red signal. The signal then returns to a dark state.
Using a HAWK signal as a pedestrian is easy. Simply push the button and wait for the walk indication to appear. Be sure traffic has stopped before you enter the crosswalk and cross safely to the other side. The flashing DON’T WALK signal will appear as you finish your crossing. Countdown numbers will show how much time remains to cross the street.
Download the printable Salt Lake City HAWK brochure.
Visit the Crosswalk Improvements webpage to view recent HAWK additions and other enhancements around the City.
Pedestrian and Bicycle Master Plan
Salt Lake City’s Pedestrian and Bicycle Master Plan provides a guiding framework, recommendations, and policies for the development of pedestrian and bicycle facilities and improvements, along with education and enforcement programs. In keeping with the City’s Complete Streets ordinance, the plan addresses walking and bicycling as integral to the City’s transportation systems, while also recognizing the significant health, fitness, and recreational aspects. This plan was passed by the City Council in 2015, updating the previous bicycle and pedestrian plan from 2004. With support from the City’s citizen-based Bicycle Advisory Committee, the City has had a bicycle master plan dating back to the early 1990’s.
Sidewalk Maintenance & Repair
Sidewalks provide a safe and level walkway and provide separation between motor vehicles and pedestrians. They also provide a safer place, as opposed to the street, for children to walk and play. Sidewalk maintenance and repairs are the responsibility of the adjacent property owner, occupant, lessor, or agent. For more information about City programs and services related to sidewalk maintenance and repairs, visit the MyStreet page.
Sidewalk Snow Removal
Section 14.20.070 of the Salt Lake City Code requires that hail, snow, or sleet on the sidewalk abutting your property be removed within twenty-four (24) hours after such hail, snow, or sleet has ceased falling. For enforcement information contact Civil Enforcement at 801-535-7225. Learn more about snow removal in Salt Lake City on our snow removal webpage.
Section 14.20.010 of the Salt Lake City Code prohibits residents from allowing sidewalks adjacent to their premises to be obstructed. This includes allowing landscaping to grow into the sidewalk area such that it inhibits free passage of pedestrians. For enforcement information contact the Engineering Division at 801-535-7961 or Civil Enforcement at 801-535-7225.