Median Barriers

Median barriers are islands located along the centerline of a street and continuing through an intersection so as to block through movement at a cross street.

They are good for:

  • Local street connections to main streets where through traffic along the continuing local street is a problem
  • Main streets where left-turns to and/or from the side street are unsafe

Advantages:

  • Median Barriers can improve safety at an intersection of a local street and a major street by prohibiting dangerous turning movements
  • They can reduce traffic volumes on a cut-through route that crosses a major street

Disadvantages:

  • They require available street width on the major street
  • They limit turns to and from the side street for local residents and emergency services

Effectiveness:

  • Average of 31% decrease in traffic volume, or a decrease of 1167 vehicles per day (from a sample of 10 sites; average includes various types of volume control measures)

Similar Measures:

  • By placing a barrier across only one stem of the intersection, you have a Full Closure
  • By placing a barrier only half-way across a street along only one stem of the intersection, you have a Half Closure
  • By placing the barrier diagonally through an intersection, you have a Diagonal Diverter
  • By shortening the barrier and placing it at a midblock location only, you have a Center Island Median
  • By restricting turning movements using channelization out of the side street itself, you have a Forced Turn Island

Cost Estimate(s):

  • $15,000 – 20,000 per 100 feet
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