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A city council spokesman said due to Covid-19, many people were understandably reluctant to touch the buttons with their hands to activate the crossings.
However, kicking the buttons could damage the mechanisms and create a safety issue if the button then did not work.
The council encouraged people to use their elbows to push the buttons instead, the spokesman said.
The council is installing about 270 of the bars at 35 intersections throughout the city, beginning with the highest-use areas.
The cost to install the bars was about $250 per intersection.
Each damaged button cost about $500 to replace.