Friday, October 12, 2018

traffic zones

The DMV says that it's better to get an appointment than wait in line. When I needed to go in two months ago, I did both. I went in at 6:15 am on August 13 and waited in line 45 minutes until they opened, and then another 35 minutes to wait inside and finish the transaction. Total time investment, about 2 hours including the time needed to drive to the office that opens at 7 am. It was that little because I was willing to rise that early.

If I'd waited for the date of my appointment, I'd be going in today. Today. (I cancelled the appointment after I got my license in the mail, but it's still in my personal calendar.)

Yesterday, the city held a walking tour of one long block of a nearby arterial street, to tutor curious residents in plans and proposals to increase traffic safety. The block extends from the major intersection whose pedestrian crossings are frequently flooded with students from the high school at one corner, to a lesser signaled intersection where recently a lone pedestrian crossing the artery was plowed over by a driver from the side street who was turning right and apparently not looking.

The traffic consultant leading the tour spoke much of improving visibility at intersections and providing tools for pedestrian safety, and the irregular median breaks which contribute to the bad accident rate on the street. It's not like the street I lived on in college, where regularly at night drivers would plow up the wrong way on a one-way street, leading to dramatic crashes, but it's serious enough, and it's nice to know what's being mooted. Someone on the tour had heard a rumor that both the local shopping centers, which I know are at least 60 years old because they were around when I first moved here, are going to be torn up and replaced by the retail-housing mix that is gaining popularity, but we'll see.

Meanwhile the once-thriving, now derelict, regional mall a couple miles away is now formally being torn up, but they're still arguing over what will replace it, and as it's across the city limits my city and its voters have no say in any of this.

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