The Actual Purpose Of Those Colorful Sidewalk Bumps

source: Twitter/@cityofkingston

Have you ever noticed those bumpy sections of sidewalk that often appear near crosswalks and other pedestrian crossings? You may have wondered what they’re there for, or you may have never even paid them any mind. Well, those sidewalk bumps are actually very important, and they serve a specific purpose.

No, those sidewalk bumps are not there for traction. They are referred to as “tactile paving,” and are there for visually impaired people. Because of the raised bumps and bright colors, these sections of tactile paving are meant to warn visually impaired people where the sidewalk ends and where the street begins.

These sidewalk bumps are sometimes called braille pathways. Depending on the pattern of the bumps, these pathways can signify different things like the street ending, that there is a set of train tracks ahead, or that there is a staircase or other tripping hazard ahead. It goes without saying how important these sections of tactile paving are to the visually impaired communities in each city.

To learn more about the history and benefits of tactile paving, click on the video below.