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Andrea Hsu

Crosswalks of Chengdu

My jaywalking habits have definitely intensified since I arrived in Chengdu.

I don't know what it is about China and jaywalking. Perhaps it's the complete absence of right-of-way for pedestrians (so why try to cross safely anyway.) Perhaps it's the safety-in-numbers mentality (cross when the jaywalker next to you is crossing). Or perhaps, it's intersections like one I stumbled across today.

The intersection of Shuncheng, East Datong and Zhengfu Streets. hide caption

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This is the intersection of Shuncheng, East Datong, and Zhengfu Streets in north-central Chengdu. Looks pretty normal on the map, but here's what it's like in person:

T-shaped crosswalk configuration defies logic.....


Chengdu intersection
......but it seems to faze no one.


It took me a moment to figure out why people were walking in the middle of the road. But look closely. In fact, these people are all following the crosswalks, to the "T." Literally. But no one seemed to be bother by this crosswalk configuration. There was no honking, no screeching of tires, I, on the other hand, was fascinated, and couldn't stop taking pictures. -- Andrea Hsu  Andrea Hsu, NPR hide caption

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Andrea Hsu, NPR

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