Abbey Road crossing live webcam

Did you know that there is an Abbey Road crossing live webcam?
abbeyroad.com/Crossing#crossing-cam

Watching this webcam is a bit addicting. In the afternoon hours, many tourists are taking photos of themselves walking across the crosswalk. (You can select an earlier time in the day to see the webcam at a particular time.)

Cars have to stop and wait for the photos. Local drivers must detest this particular part of the street. Amusing that this road still has cars driving down it. You’d think with all these tourists constantly standing in traffic, that it would be considered dangerous. Wouldn’t the local government just close off this section of the street to car traffic? Perhaps I should look it up on a map. Maybe this is an important street connecting two busy areas, and there are no possible adjacent streets to redirect traffic around it.

The image from the Beatles album is so ingrained into our heads, that it becomes bizarre to see cars driving down this street. Seeing cars on Abbey Road shouldn’t be surprising, because, after all, it’s a CROSSWALK. Even in the original image, cars are parked on the street. In the far-off distance, there appears to be a car driving on the street.

Watching this live webcam is so amusing of how the pedestrians and cars interact. Will the car slow down? Will the pedestrian jump out into the street? There really seems to be a battle as to if this is a street or a pedestrian playground. Who really owns this segment of land? In almost every other area where cars drive, the car reigns supreme. But here, it looks like pedestrians are the ones who dominate. For that, I love it.

This webcam tells a constant story of the interaction between pedestrians and cars. And not just pedestrians, but tourists. Photo-hungry tourists.

Waiting for tourists is a lesson in life

I worked in the Tribune Tower for 18 years. We had many tourists come to visit to see the lobby and the historic rocks embedded in the exterior of the building. People would often be standing about, completely unaware that workers are trying to get in or out of the building. Many workers found it frustrating, but I loved it. People are willingly spending their free time to be in my workspace. How delightful! I work in a place where people are choosing to visit and see. And I got to see this place every day. If people were standing about, sure! Stand around, enjoy. If anything, it was a constant reminder for me to slow down and enjoy.

Comparison of Abbey Road crosswalk with Tribune Tower crosswalk

The Tribune Tower also had a crosswalk a bit like Abbey Road. The Abbey Road crosswalk has no intersection of streets. It’s merely a crosswalk in the middle of the road. The Tribune Tower crosswalk is a bit like that. There are no streets intersecting at Tribune Tower. It’s just a crosswalk kinda out of nowhere.

Years before I worked at Tribune Tower, my dad was driving me somewhere downtown when we stopped at the Tribune Tower crosswalk. I asked him why he stopped. There’s no street. He pointed out the traffic light. Odd. I asked my dad why there was a crosswalk right here. He said the Tribune Tower is an important building, so they get their own crosswalk and traffic light.

Often cars would not notice that there is a stoplight there, so they would just drive right through it. A bit dangerous for pedestrians. It would be great if cars learned to slow down and enjoy the delights around them.

Now with this webcam, you can enjoy the tourists walking across Abbey Road all the time!

Footnotes:

I have a couple of extra paragraphs that don’t really fit in. One talks about other webcams to put the Abbey Road webcam into the context of the variety of live cams out there.

Webcams that feature skylines are great. You can see the weather change throughout the day. Most webcams are skylines. But what I really like about a live webcam is seeing people.

And a little bit more comparison between Abbey Road and Tribune Tower.

The Abbey road crosswalk doesn’t have a traffic light. (How odd would that be?!). And the Tribune Tower’s crosswalk has a giant garden planted in the median. I loved stopping on that median to look at the plants.

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