Curbside Haikus

New York unveils creative signs aimed at pedestrian safety

Image
New York City DOT

Oncoming cars rush

Each a 3-ton bullet.

And you, flesh and bone.

Janette Sadik-Kahn and the New York Department of Transporation succeed yet again in putting the fun in transportation. Bike lanes! Beach chairs in Times Square! Reduced vehicular traffic! Now they've launched Curbside Haiku [PDF], a project that takes poetry to the streets via traffic safety signs throughout New York City. To wit:

 

As the New York Times' City Blog reports (in haiku form, which I will not attempt here),

"At crash-prone crosswalks,

200 will be installed

(Two are in Spanish)... 

Look for them on poles 

from Bronx to Staten Island.

Twelve sites in total."

Designed by John Morse, the graphic signs evoke both Saul Bass and e.e. cummings. Indisuputably cool (you can buy one for yourself for $60), their capacity to keep pedestrians from texting while crossing remains to be seen. But given the deluge of visuals throughout the city, the relative subtlety of Morse's creations just might make them stand out in the crowd.

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