EPD Reports 13% Decrease in Ridge Ave. Traffic Crashes
Evanston Police report an approximately 13 percent reduction in traffic crashes on the Ridge Avenue Corridor (Ridge Avenue, from Howard to Emerson Streets) in 2018 as compared to 2017. There were 241 crashes reported in 2018, down from 278 in 2017. The reduction in crashes is the result of a traffic initiative that was a coordinated effort between the Evanston Police Department, City of Evanston traffic engineers, and other City officials, including 4th Ward Alderman Donald Wilson. The goal of the initiative was to increase safety and address citizen traffic complaints along the Ridge Avenue Corridor, especially between Greenleaf and Church Streets.
The Evanston Police Department issued 4,311 traffic citations along the Ridge Avenue Corridor. The following is partial list of the citations issued:
- 1,339 citations for speeding
- 901 citations for distracted driving
- 874 citations for disobeying a traffic control device
- 239 citations for failure to wear a seat belt
Additional City efforts to make the Ridge Avenue Corridor safer included:
- Reducing the speed limit from 30 MPH to 25 MPH
- Traffic signal operational changes
- Improved traffic control signage
- Tree trimming to increase visibility
The City of Evanston and the Evanston Police Department educated motorists about the changes made to increase safety and the importance of complying with traffic laws. This was done through the dissemination of press releases and the utilization of social media platforms, electronic message boards and speed display signs.
The intersection of Lake Street and Ridge Avenue along with the intersection of Greenwood Street and Ridge Avenue had the most improvement. Traffic crashes were down 58 percent at each intersection.
The Evanston Police Department will continue its efforts to improve safety and encourage driver behavior changes through targeted enforcement. These efforts will focus on speeding, disobeying traffic regulations, distracted driving, and seat belt requirements.