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APS at pushbutton actuated intersections

Pushbutton-actuated pedestrian timing
Pushbutton-actuated pedestrian timing requires a pedestrian to locate the pushbutton and push it to request the pedestrian phase. A pedestrian who is blind needs to know a button-press is required to actuate a pedestrian timing, and needs to be able to find the pushbutton easily. The most appropriate way to convey that information is with a locator tone at the pushbutton. In addition, pedestrians who are blind need access to information about the beginning of the Walk interval.

A pushbutton-integrated APS, or pedhead-mounted APS with a locator tone, should be selected if an intersection has pedestrian actuation at any time.

Draft Public Rights-of-Way Accessibility Guidelines require APS with a locator tone where there are pedestrian pushbuttons. As well, the MUTCD 4E.08 guidance states that "pushbuttons should be audibly locatable."

Location of pushbuttons for actuated signals
To be useful to pedestrians who are visually impaired, pushbuttons must be installed as near the crosswalk as possible, preferably on the sidewalk within the width of the crosswalk connection or adjacent to the crosswalk, and as close to the curb as possible. Pedestrians who are blind must locate and push the pushbutton, then align themselves to cross as discussed in the section entitled "Travel by Blind".

Even with an accessible signal, a pedestrian who is blind or visually impaired may not cross on the first Walk indication, but may need to listen to traffic and the accessible signal for a cycle to confirm their alignment, the signal functioning, and traffic direction before pushing the pushbutton again, realigning and crossing on the following pedestrian phase.

See additional information on pushbutton locations.

Recommended characteristics - APS at pushbutton-actuated intersections
APS devices at pushbutton-actuated intersections where beaconing is not needed should have:
  • Pushbutton locator tone and tactile arrow at the pushbutton; and
  • Quiet WALK signal -- 2-5dBA above ambient sound.
  • Either pushbutton-integrated APS, or a pedhead-mounted APS with the WALK indication speaker aimed down toward the waiting location.
Recommended installation at pushbutton-actuated intersections
Installation recommendations:
  • The sound source for two pushbutton-integrated or pedhead-mounted APS on the same corner should be a minimum of 3 m (10 ft) apart.
  • Precise location of the APS is very important to prevent ambiguity about which crosswalk is being signaled.
    - Pedhead-mounted APS speakers must be above the waiting location of the crosswalk being signaled (See drawings and discussion).
    - Pushbutton-integrated APS must be located close to the crosswalk (see drawings and discussion).
  • If it is not possible to mount two APS on the same corner a minimum of 10 feet apart, an APS providing a speech message during the Walk interval, as well as a pushbutton message, is recommended. See Pole locations and these two figures(1,2) for installation locations.
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