Nearly two months after the hybrid pedestrian beacons on High Street were activated, downtown Worthington visitors still are adjusting to them.
The long-delayed beacons made their debut April 10 and designed to create safer crossings for pedestrians across High Street near the Village Green, Short Street and Stafford Avenue.
At the time of their installation, service director Dan Whited said he expected "nice large signs with pretty clear indicators" to make the crossings easy for pedestrians and drivers alike.
After observing them for more than a month, Whited said the beacons' launch is "going well" overall.
"We've had, of course, a few hiccups here and there as people learn the signs and procedures ... but it's been very successful," he said.
Though "a few signage changes" have been necessary, Whited said, pedestrians are using the crossings more, particularly at Stafford Avenue next to the Old Worthington Library, 820 High St.
Whited said library director Chuck Gibson was so happy with the crossing he sent the planning department a thank-you note for the beacon.
Worthington Division of Police officers were giving only warnings to drivers who blew through the stop lights at the crossings when they first debuted, but they now will begin giving tickets, according to the division.
If a driver runs through the light, it will be the same penalty as running a red traffic light.
Sgt. James Moran called the crossings a "work in progress" and said people still aren't fully comfortable with them.
"There are days pedestrian traffic knows what it's supposed to do and the drivers don't, and there are days the drivers know what they're supposed to do and the pedestrian traffic doesn't," he said.
Moran said an officer has been stationed at the Village Green crossing on Saturdays during the Worthington Farmers Market to instruct pedestrians how to cross properly and make sure vehicles are stopped.
Ultimately, Whited said, he believes the $188,000 beacons will be an effective pattern change for downtown.
"I think we're finding that pedestrians are starting to get used to it and how it works," he said.