Quick, what does this sign say?


Here’s an image of a “Share the Road” sign that Evanston city staff has developed. They hope, after presenting it at tonight’s Transportation and Parking Committee meeting, to eventually use on signs around town.

Does it say “Bikes and pedestrians yield to cars”? or “Cars yield to bikes and pedestrians; bikes yield to pedestrians”?


It’s meant to say the latter, of course, but given normal English word order and the sign’s wimpy little arrows, we bet a lot of drivers would  take it to mean the former.

The concept for the sign seems to have been adapted from signs like this on the American Trails website that you may have encountered on a hiking trail or other low-speed environments where cars aren’t allowed and users presumably have more time to figure out what the sign means. And notice the much bolder arrows on the trail sign.

Honolulu has tried this version, losing the horse and adding the car, in conjunction with a protected bike lane project.

But sometimes, to be clear, a sign needs to keep its message simple. The whole message might take two signs.

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