A very short video of a pedestrian crossing signal in the downtown core of Hamilton Ontario. The very short walk phase (7 seconds) is followed by a 20 second "Don't Walk" phase.
Pedestrians are not supposed to start crossing during the don't walk phase, meaning that they would conceivably have to wait 19 seconds of a "don't-walk" phase for the light during the traffic green-phase, then the entire red-phase of the traffic light, before being able to make their crossing.
A countdown timer would give pedestrians access to accurate information about the timing for the crossing, and enable them to make an informed decision about crossing. There are a few countdown timers in various parts of the city, like Bay and King, and Cootes at Sanders. We need more.