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Go to Front page Background section Travel by Blind
Rules & Regulations
Technologies and Features section Types
Walk Indications
Other Features
Choosing and Installing section Where to Install
Designing Installations
New Construction or Reconstruction
Retrofitting an Intersection with an APS
Installation Specifications
Field Adjustments
State of Practices section Case Studies
International Practice
Devices section Manufacturers
Selection Tool
Product Matrix
Downloads section Full Guide
Rating Scales
Field Adjustments

Addition of APS to an existing intersection

Application of new construction guidelines
In retrofit situations, the ADA requires that new construction guidelines be followed to the maximum extent feasible, where compliance with new construction guidelines is technically infeasible. The determination of technical infeasibility will vary depending on the scope of the project and the existing situation.

The New Construction guidelines should be applied as much as possible given the constraints of the project and the site.

The following sections provide guidance to assist the engineer/designer in understanding the effect of varying locations and different actuation on the usability of the information provided by APS.

Avoiding ambiguity
The goal of the new construction location requirements and guidelines is to provide unambiguous information about which crosswalk has the WALK indication, and to make pushbuttons accessible to and usable by all pedestrians, including those with visual and mobility impairments. Poor location and installation can render APS unusable by a pedestrian who is blind or mobility impaired, or provide dangerous or incorrect information.

Pedhead-mounted and pushbutton-integrated APS in the US have typically been mounted on the same pole as the pedestrian signals for that crosswalk, regardless of whether the pedhead is the one closest to that crosswalk.

In Australia and some European countries, it is common to install a separate stub pole to mount pushbutton-integrated devices in a consistent location in relation to crosswalks. This consistent location makes it easy to determine which device the WALK indication is coming from, and, therefore, provides unambiguous information regarding which crosswalk has the Walk interval. The Draft Guidelines for Accessible Public Rights-of-Way implement that strategy in new construction in the U.S.

Issues to consider
In designing retrofit installations, an understanding of the effect of certain intersection features on APS use will be helpful in making decisions. These include:
  • Type of pedestrian phase actuation
  • Existing pole location
The section entitled "Installation Specifications" provides information on specifications for installation. The section entitled "Designing Installations" provides general principles to consider in APS installation.

Effect of type of actuation on device features
The individual who is blind or visually impaired has different information needs that relate to the method used to actuate the pedestrian phase. Different device features may be appropriate for situations with:
  • Pushbutton-actuated pedestrian timing
  • Pedestrian timing that does not require pushbutton actuation
    - Pretimed pedestrian phase,
    - Pedestrian phase on recall,
    - Passive pedestrian detection.
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