For Once, Some Good Unintended Consequences on Irving

IMG_0669.JPGIt’s hard not to notice all the construction going on around Irving Street, as part of a traffic calming/pedestrian safety project the DPT has been implementing. From all accounts, it should be done fairly soon. In addition to new bus shelters, there will be “bulb outs” from various points along Irving to make it easier for people to cross the street, board the N, and generally, make the street safer for everyone.
Two things I’ve noticed over the years along Irving have been the fact that many drivers seem to get confused and think that Irving has two lanes going in each direction, which it does not. This often leads to impatient drivers trying to pass, only to nearly kill people de-boarding the N.
The other has been the total cluelessness many drivers have when it comes to turns in a busy intersection. At 9th and Irving, impatient drivers would often try crashing through the wall of people crossing on the “Walk” sign to turn right onto 9th.
Likewise, it seems that the rules of the road concerning left turns is no longer taught at driver’s school – people just turn even if there’s a conga line of cars approaching. Now, banning left turns (or all turns) at 9th and Irving wouldn’t solve anything – but for now, things have calmed down. Why? Because the road construction has made it nearly impossible for over-stimulated drivers to plow through pedestrians, all to save .001 seconds at the light.
So, never let it be said all unintended consequences are bad. For now it’s a lot safer (if a bit stranger) crossing at 9th and Irving than it was before. Let’s hope the new improvements help calm things down.

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2 Responses to For Once, Some Good Unintended Consequences on Irving

  1. Janet C says:

    Not that you would know, but, do you know why it is forbidden(with island stopping you) to turn left onto Lincoln from 8th?

  2. Greg Dewar says:

    They have to limit left turns and such on Lincoln to keep it moving. Because it’s so busy, and especially so at certain times, if you have every single intersection allow turns in all directions, it’d shut down.
    It’s also dangerous, even as is, for people walking on Lincoln. People making lefts from Lincoln to the avenues pay no attention to pedestrians , and will blast through once the traffic allows them through, regardless of who’s there. Add to it foolish cyclists who insist on riding on the sidewalk (instead of talking a safer road), and Lincoln is very dangerous to walk along.
    One of the unintended consequences of building that stupid garage in the park is that people now think they’re able to park in the garage which ALWAYS fills up early, and then end up cluttering the neighborhood, keeping out actual residents.

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