Toronto’s Scramble Crossing Debuts Tomorrow!

The scramble crossing in Shibuya, Tokyo, Japan.
If you’re ever in Tokyo, you need to observe the scramble crossing in Shibuya. It’s pretty fascinating.

Tomorrow at 11 a.m., the intersection at Yonge and Dundas streets will become a scramble crossing (or as some of you urban and traffic engineer types might call it, a Barnes Dance or “exclusive pedestrian phase”). That means that at a certain point in the traffic light cycle, all vehicular traffic in any direction must stop, and pedestrians can use the entire intersection to cross it any way they like, including diagonally. I work a short bike ride away from this intersection and might pop by to take some photos.

For more on scramble crossings, see the Wikipedia entry for “Pedestrian Scramble”.

6 replies on “Toronto’s Scramble Crossing Debuts Tomorrow!”

Bizarre. I’d never heard of this “scramble crossing” thing (a.k.a. Barnes dance) until yesterday. Then twice in as many days, thanks to you and this article: The Traffic Guru which was linked to, I think, by one in Boing Boing.


Saskatoon used to have a scramble corner at 2nd Ave. & 23rd St. I was too young at the time to be aware of whether it was considered a good thing or not.

The scramble crossing at Hachiko Square (Shibuya): Notice in the picture that there’s no “zebra zone” between the lower left and the upper right. *That* is a fun trip to make during the morning or evening rush…

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