College student designs crosswalk to improve safety outside elementary school

Miami Valley News

RICHMOND, Ind. (WDTN) — A colorful crosswalk outside of a Richmond elementary school isn’t just for looks; it’s designed to improve safety.

“People think you have to go to a gallery or a museum to see art,” says Earlham College junior studio art major Kate Wallace.

Her artwork is much more than painted pavement. Wallace designed a painted intersection in Richmond’s Starr Neighborhood as part of a safety initiative right in front of Starr Elementary School.

“It kind of more visually blocks it off,” describes Wallace “That kind of narrows where cars drive and park.”

The bright green and blue stars at the corner of North 19th and C street are sure to get drivers’ attention.

“I wanted to make it about the neighborhood, but I wanted it to be like playful and fun for kids to look at,” says Wallace.

In her design, she included shapes and characteristics that represent the city of Richmond’s history.

“I really wanted to work with the history of Starr Neighborhood and Starr Gennett Records–the history of working and recording jazz. So that’s where I got a lot of the designs. The green and the blue are Starr Elementary School colors,” details Wallace.

With the help of a team of about two dozen volunteers, Kate painted the crosswalk. It comes at the perfect time with students back in school.

Besides grabbing drivers’ attention, city officials hope the painted curb bump-outs and crosswalk design will also serve as a reminder to slow down.

“Hopefully we’re planning on doing some more around Richmond and the other schools,” states Wallace.

The project was funded by a grant from the Urban Enterprise Association.

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