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Breakfast links: Trees and tickets


Photo from Mt. Pleasant forum.
Business cuts tree: Haydee's Restaurant in Mount Pleasant cut down a tree on the sidewalk without permits, possibly to make room for a sidewalk cafe. On the Mt. Pleasant forum, some have called for a boycott of Haydee's, while Jack McKay suggests better lighting and a cafe would be better than the somewhat anemic tree. (Prince of Petworth)

Save your trees: Casey Trees urges you to water your trees, which need 25 gallons of water a week to stay alive and haven't been getting it.

DC leaders and traffic infractions: Vincent Gray had an unpaid ticket for driving on the shoulder of the Beltway, which he cleared up just before the current campaign and claims he thought had been paid (Post) ... Adrian Fenty got pulled over for not signaling before a turn at 8th and H (DeBonis) ... But far worse, Councilmember Harry Thomas, Jr. has five unpaid speeding tickets in Maryland. (City Desk)

Kwame in the hole: Kwame Brown might not have a lot of traffic tickets, but he has $50,000 in credit card debt due to overspending. "It just trickles and trickles," he said. Will the same happen with DC tax revenue? (DC Wire)

Remembering Swanson's death and inaction: It's been two years since a garbage truck and driver killed Alice Swanson at 20th and R, NW. Friends placed handmade remembrances at the site. DCist also runs down the history of the removed ghost bike memorial; someone re-added a ghost bike as well. Mark Blacknell posts the police report, which MPD has still never officially released after two years; WashCycle analyzed how the report blames Swanson and says the driver broke no laws even though he did.

Your house in an 8-bit video game: Clever programmer Brett Camper made an interactive map of DC that looks like old 8-bit video games. You can zoom in and out and search by address. He also has other cities. (DCist)

And...: Mayor Fenty wants to charge for inactive liquor licenses, which Georgetown Metropolitan likes but thinks doesn't go far enough ... Douglas Jemal wants to build some rental housing in the Mount Vernon Triangle (WBJ) ... Glen Echo Park may have integrated in 1960, but blacks and whites still largely vacation in different places. (Dvorak)

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David Alpert is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Greater Greater Washington and Greater Greater Education. He worked as a Product Manager for Google for six years and has lived in the Boston, San Francisco, and New York metro areas in addition to Washington, DC. He loves the area which is, in many ways, greater than those others, and wants to see it become even greater. 

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That is a growing tree. When the word "anemic" was used, I expected to click on the link and see a glorified weed. But that seems to be a substantial tree, well on its way to becoming a larger one. The person who did that probably should be prosecuted. But he/she/they just as likely had political cover for doing what they did.

It's just the biggest crying shame that the horticulture of the capital of the United States of America has come down to advice (advice that is anemic) from a mediocre tree foundation for individual residents to water the trees.

NPS and DPR should be deeply ashamed, as well as our leaders.

by Jazzy on Jul 9, 2010 9:25 am • linkreport

Fenty was pulled for failing to signal a turn? Is that the first time in the history of MPDC where they've pulled someone over for that infraction? That law is more poorly enforced that speeding, red-light running, or stop-sign rolling.

by ah on Jul 9, 2010 9:28 am • linkreport

Pulled over for failing to signal??? That's typically cop pretext for having a look in your car and checking to see if your eyes are bloodshot.

by aaa on Jul 9, 2010 9:34 am • linkreport

I'm kind of surprised the cop didn't let Fenty off with a verbal warning, particularly for such a minor infraction.

by Steven Yates on Jul 9, 2010 9:38 am • linkreport

He did get a warning.

by David Alpert on Jul 9, 2010 9:41 am • linkreport

@David
I got the impression from reading the story that it was a written warning (as opposed to a verbal one, would there be a record of a verbal one?).

by Steven Yates on Jul 9, 2010 9:53 am • linkreport

"Will the same happen with DC tax revenue?"

Will the same happen? When hasn't it been happening?

by Chris on Jul 9, 2010 9:53 am • linkreport

That tree story was odd. Apparently the business owner planted the tree without any permits and figured they could illegally remove their illegally planted tree. Interesting rationale.

by Fritz on Jul 9, 2010 10:17 am • linkreport

@Fritz DDOT says the owner lied about planting the tree.

"She initially told me that she had planted the tree and because of that she was entitled to take it down. I of course did my own research and found that it was not the case. "

by jcm on Jul 9, 2010 10:31 am • linkreport

Fritz,

Read on.

Not sure that is the case.

by Jazzy on Jul 9, 2010 10:31 am • linkreport

jcm: I read that sentence to say that it was not the case that she could take it down, even if she had planted it, but it's not clear and now that I look it it your interpretation makes sense too.

by David Alpert on Jul 9, 2010 10:33 am • linkreport

If the owner of Haydee's really wants outdoor seating, how about shaving off that hideous first floor bumpout to her restaurant.

by NikolasM on Jul 9, 2010 10:57 am • linkreport

Actually, David, your interpretation may be the correct one. The tree doesn't show up in the Casey Trees map. Does any other DC agency plant trees?

by jcm on Jul 9, 2010 10:58 am • linkreport

Casey is not a DC agency.

by Jazzy on Jul 9, 2010 11:01 am • linkreport

I think regardless of whether or not the owner originally planted the tree in public space, we're all agreed that she couldn't remove it without a permit.

At least the owner did a nice job with the brick sidewalk replacement. Which also would have required permits.

The bizarre episode raises an interesting question: Which is a better use of the space? A tree? Or an outdoor cafe?

by Fritz on Jul 9, 2010 11:19 am • linkreport

@Jazzy - I think jcm means "an agency in DC", which Casey is. I think your criticism of Casey is unduly harsh. I have found Casey to be very professional and knowledgeable. They have helped residents all over DC plant hundreds of trees and teach them how to care for them, such as by providing the simple information that we're in drought conditions and young trees need 25 gal/week. Additionally Casey has planted hundreds of trees on public land (school grounds and parks) and manages a labor force of volunteers to care for those trees.

It's a private foundation started by someone with a load of cash who cares about the loss of tree canopy in the nations capital. Maybe you think it's "mediocre" but its better then any of the other privately funded tree foundations in DC (none).

I think Casey is great and DC is lucky to have it. http://www.caseytrees.org/geographic/maps-tools/viewer/index.php

by Bianchi on Jul 9, 2010 11:20 am • linkreport

I feel sure that it is illegal to plant or take down trees without prior authorization from the city. And truly this should be a function of a city government agency, not private citizens.

But whoa! Washington looks crappy! What happened?

No one waters or gardens here. DC looks like California, basically. Dry, brown, wilted, lackluster, and increasingly treeless.

I know - there's been a massive heat wave and prolonged drought. That accounts for SOME of the plant stress, but man - even the so-called "cultivated" areas, like our PARKS look awful.

More evidence that the transience of the area is excellent at producing, or revealing, super educated individuals who can hold forth on composting, for example (and even trees!), but can't actually maintain much, or do much manual labor, and oh what a price it is to pay. But, more than anything, it is the disempowerment over time of our city agencies that used to have a holistic vision for the city. Not anymore, I guess.

I hope this heat wave has shown us all what concrete can do. It traps heat. Keep that in mind. It traps heat and the heat does not escape nearly as quickly as, say, a grass field.

In the specific instance in Mt Pleasant, it has been alleged that both the ANC rep and the councilmember gave their approval one way or the other for this illegal act. I suppose we will have to wait and see about all that.

I am unfamiliar with neighborhood politics in Mt Pleasant, but as for the Ward 1 council race, Graham seems to be the old school candidate. Ironically it is the old school politicians who were proponents of a holistic vision for cities, including our streetscapes and parks. Now it seems that he is just bending with the wind, which is something I am not sure the other two candidates would not do either. These “green” issues – streetscapes, trees, gardens – are going to be if they are not already the hot button issues. It is massively frustrating that accompanying them is not in-depth practical, working knowledge. This is because it has been drained from the appropriate DC agencies and it is left up to citizens to fight like cats and dogs among themselves, pushing and pulling the leaders instead of being led by them.

Casey trees is perhaps good about educating individuals, but it is not the solution citywide. It throws money at things. That foundation needs to dump their money quickly, I've heard. They unleash an army of voluteers a bit thoughtlessly. ThereÂ’s no follow up. Trees are very often left to die.

The solution lies at the governmental level. We can continue with this piecemeal approach, but it lacks soundness, commitment, money and follow through.

by Jazzy on Jul 9, 2010 11:29 am • linkreport

MPD cops don't even issue tickets for much more serious violations like running stop signs and red lights. I suspect that Fenty got pulled over for something more serious and when the cop realized it was the mayor he gave him the absurd "failing to signal" warning.

On the other hand, I saw a cop pull over someone for (I think) failing to stop at the stop sign at 11th and Monroe. When the cop snagged him right after, I stopped in my tracks, I was so shocked.

Maybe these two events are entirely coincidental, but it could be that MPD is trying to step up their game lately on minor traffic infractions. I support his wholeheartedly.

While I'm not a big fan of cops wasting time on, for example, failing to stop 100% at a 4-way stop sign when clearly nobody else is there, I would much rather have the cops over-enforce traffic violations than act like they have historically -- that is not enforcing them at all.

The most important one is yielding to pedestrians, but I think that because most people (rightly) don't think they'll ever get pulled over, they drive like idiots. Having a little fear of god in people will go a long way towards getting people to start THINKING more when they are in their cars. This will do infinitely more good than any number of automated cameras at improving safety.

by Jamie on Jul 9, 2010 11:30 am • linkreport

Actually, David, your interpretation may be the correct one. The tree doesn't show up in the Casey Trees map. Does any other DC agency plant trees?

It does if you select the "citywide trees of note" box, or within that the "street trees 2009" box. The default on that map is to show only the Casey Trees plantings, which are ones funded by the Casey Trees endowment. Street trees are installed by DDOT (although some now may get paid for from that endowment).

Anyway, we're all in agreement that regardless of who planted it it is not legal to cut it down without approval because it's not the owner's tree. It's implicitly a gift to the city.

by ah on Jul 9, 2010 11:42 am • linkreport

@ Jazzy - That foundation needs to dump their money quickly, I've heard.<\i> Get involved with Casey Trees to find out whats really going on. Trees planted in boxes by Casey volunteers in front of residences are the responsibility of the residents to steward. Some of them inevitably get neglected. The trees planted by Casey in public land are cared for either by Casey or DC or sometimes by nearby residents who commit to it.

@ ah - re: the tree in Mt.P It's implicitly a gift to the city. Indeed.

by Bianchi on Jul 9, 2010 12:01 pm • linkreport

Bianchi - I have! I've also worked in areas where they work. That's why I write what I do.

Look, I do not deny that people have had very meaningful experiences volunteering with them. What I question is the reliance on them as the tree solution in the city.

by Jazzy on Jul 9, 2010 12:04 pm • linkreport

@ Jazzy - cool. I don't think anyone suggested relying on Casey as THE solution. I don't think governement is THE solution either. Personally I love it when private citizens step up, like the founder of Casey Trees, to help fill a gap. She didn't have to do that. She could've said screw you DC I'm moving to _someplace wonderful_.

It's undeniable that Casey Tress has helped bring public attention to the loss of the tree canopy. Goverment can't do everything. The gap Casey fills is a great example of how public-private partnership can achieve success. Is it perfect? Of course not. Is there more that can be done? Of course! But without Casey Trees there would be far fewer trees in DC and far less public awareness.

by Bianchi on Jul 9, 2010 12:32 pm • linkreport

Not sure I agree with your conclusion about the tree canopy and Casey trees. I think there is such a dearth of true knowledge within the DC government now that there IS a big reliance on Casey for all things trees, hence the vociferousness of my complaining.

I'm not sure if I am ready to conclude that what the woman who donated all that money did has been a net good or not.

I've seen more trees die than not.

What's needed is a thoughtful vision. Not piecemeal solutions.

by Jazzy on Jul 9, 2010 12:36 pm • linkreport

I have one of those trees, sycamores I think, and they aren't appropriate for this city. Wilts in the heat, sheds leaves and bark, and then doesn't provide much shade for most of the summer.

A few other sycamores on Mt. Pleasant Street look to be in serious need of trimming, and when they are replaced, I hope Casey puts in another type of tree.

by mtp on Jul 9, 2010 1:49 pm • linkreport

I think it's a London Plane, isn't it? They're widely used as street trees, because they're very tough. I have a beautiful mature one in front of my house that I love, and I can assure you it produces lots of shade. It makes growing anything flowering in my front yard a challenge.

by jcm on Jul 9, 2010 2:06 pm • linkreport

London plane, sycamore - I've read someone thought it was a Ginko. At first glance i thought it was a paperbark maple.

It's difficult to tell from that photo.

by Jazzy on Jul 9, 2010 2:13 pm • linkreport

Casey Trees came in and saved the District's tree canopy during a period when the District wasn't devoting any resources to this, but since that time the District has funded this service and its Urban Forestry Divison has been exemplary in maintaining the streetside trees ... The point where Casey Trees has shifted its focus to the backs of homes and the 'parking space' in front of home where they assist private individuals with tree planting and preserving.

by Lance on Jul 9, 2010 3:42 pm • linkreport

I did a whole week long series on trees a little while back. Short story: you cannot plant a street tree without a permit, and you definitely can't cut one down without a permit either. You can't even trim a street tree without a permit. Oh, and if you have a large tree in your backyard, you can't cut that down without a permit either.

Once you plant a tree on the street, it become the property of the city. Moreover, any structure you erect on the street (i.e. plant boxes, etc.) also become property of the city.

The key agency is the Urban Forestry Administration, which is part of DDOT. UFA has a bunch of very good people working for it, but its resources are limited. That's where organizations like Casey Trees and Trees for Georgetown come in. And its where residents come in too. If you've got a tree outside your home, nobody else is going to water it, so if you want it to survive, get out the hose at the very least once a week, and let it trickle for a half an hour. That's it.

by TM on Jul 9, 2010 3:47 pm • linkreport

"You can't even trim a street tree without a permit."

Unless, of course, you are an SYEP employee.

by Jamie on Jul 9, 2010 3:49 pm • linkreport

TM,

Wow. All I can say is wow.

Your organization is the perfect example of the point I have been trying to make about real caretaking of trees.

I'd also like to point out that the way you crafted, yes crafted, the relationship with Casey is the way to go. Supervision all the way. Attention to detail, never at any point saying "oh it's Casey trees, it will all be fine." No, you always had a hand in it. Your org is a great example for all across the city.

From your blog:

"Finally, last year Trees for Georgetown were approached by Casey Trees, the District-wide tree advocacy group. Casey Trees had a great deal for Trees for Georgetown. Here’s how it works, Trees for Georgetown goes to the Bremo Trees nursery in Bremo Bluffs, VA to pick out the trees for each fall planting. The District Urban Forestry Administration comes and takes out the dead trees from the respective tree boxes, grinds the stump, brings the box down to street level, and installs a compliant tree box fence (it must be 18″ high, allow water to flow underneath, be three sided and be at least one foot from the curb). Then Casey Trees receives the trees from Bremo Trees, plants the trees, amends the soil with leaf grow and topsoil, waters the trees twice a summer, and gives the trees a juvenile pruning. Plus Casey Trees guarantees their work. Trees for Georgetown gets all this from Casey Trees for just a $250 donation per tree."

Would that DPR took half or a quarter of the care you and your members do! Would that other groups did too.

Top notch.

by Jazzy on Jul 9, 2010 4:09 pm • linkreport

So, after all those accusations and condemnations flung at the driver of the truck that was in the accident with the cyclist at R and Conn., it turns out that the driver wasn't at fault here ... and that it was they cyclist at fault?

Maybe people will be more carefull going forward with rushing to judgements.

by Lance on Jul 9, 2010 5:19 pm • linkreport

I should make it clear that I am not personally affiliated with Trees for Georgetown. I am as impressed with their work as you, that's why I wrote about them. But I am not due any credit for their work.

by TM on Jul 9, 2010 5:20 pm • linkreport

@David. So now that the facts are out, isn't it about time yoeuI stopped saying that the truck driver 'killed' the cyclist? And no, I wouldn't advocate 'correcting' the headline either. It's never appropriate to use the word 'kill' where we are talking about an accident. It's just as revolting to use the word 'kill' whether the victim of the accident ultimately caused the accident or another party did. There' s a good reason we call it an accident when none of the participants purposely intended the results.

by Lance on Jul 10, 2010 10:53 am • linkreport

There are no new facts that are "out." The police officer failed to apply laws that the driver broke, and therefore comes to the erroneous conclusion that the cyclist must be at fault. This is an unfortunate and well-known pattern from MPD's crash investigators.

by David Alpert on Jul 10, 2010 11:19 am • linkreport

The report said the accident occurred past where the bike ended and the impact was on side if truck. A vehicle is permitted to make a right turn from a single lane road. Passing on the right in an intersection is not. The facts are clear.

by Lance on Jul 10, 2010 1:09 pm • linkreport

*past where bike lane ended

by Lance on Jul 10, 2010 1:17 pm • linkreport

It's not a one lane road, it's a two lane road with one general purpose travel lane and one restricted bicycle lane. The bike lane continues through the intersection even if it was unpainted (it's since been painted, I believe).

A vehicle in a general-purpose travel lane, when there is a bicycle lane to the right, is required to signal and move right into the bicycle lane as if it were another general-purpose travel lane, then make the turn from that lane.

Turning from the general-purpose lane across the bicycle lane (or unpainted extension of the bicycle lane through the intersection) is equivalent to making a right turn from the left-hand lane of a roadway with two general-purpose lanes in the same direction. And it's illegal.

Just because the police are ignorant of this doesn't change the facts.

When I drive to Maryland via Connecticut, I take R westbound. When I reach the light at 20th, I always signal, look in the mirrors for a bicycle, then move right into the bicycle lane area to ensure that I'm in front of any bicyclists and it's clear I'm turning right. That way they don't try to pass me on the right expecting me to go straight. Only from there do I then make the turn.

by David Alpert on Jul 10, 2010 1:20 pm • linkreport

So, your arguing that (1) the truck driver should have acted like the bike lane continued on into the intersection (despite dashed markings on the road indicating its merge into the regular lane). (2) that the truck driver had a duty to drive in a bike lane, and finally that (3) those whose duty it is to enforce those laws (ie MPD) don't understand the law as well as you do.

by Lance on Jul 10, 2010 4:00 pm • linkreport

I guess the point I am trying to makye is ythat you can't have it both ways, either the,truck driver COULD drive into a merged and combined lane (and the evidence shows he did .... AND he got there first). or the two lanes remained separate lanes in the intersection and he had no legal right to be driving in a bike (whichu would mean no right turns possible for any traffic exce

by Lance on Jul 10, 2010 4:14 pm • linkreport

*in a bike lane. The merging dashes mean the end of a lane reserved for bikes only, and hence you can't argue that that bike continues into the intersection.

by Lance on Jul 10, 2010 4:17 pm • linkreport

*bike lane continues ...

by Lance on Jul 10, 2010 4:18 pm • linkreport

Lance: The dotted lines don't generally go through intersections for general purpose lanes either. That doesn't mean the lanes don't exist. This is just how the law is; lanes extent through intersections. DDOT has started painting the bike lanes all the way through to make it clear, because many people don't understand this.

Bike lanes, aka "restricted lanes," don't allow motor vehicles in them, EXCEPT when those vehicles are about to turn right. In those cases, the vehicle drivers are required to merge into those lanes before the turn. That doesn't appear to be what the truck driver did.

by David Alpert on Jul 10, 2010 4:20 pm • linkreport

Re - the Swanson death: The discussion on WashCycle is far more measured and nuanced. It could simply be that no one was at fault and that it was a tragic accident. Of course, if you're an ideologue, there can't be such a thing as a no-fault accident between an automobile and either a pedestrian or cyclist; there must be fault and it must be with the driver and there can't be any other conclusion.

For the non-ideologues, I think we can recognize that horrible tragedies occur to good people.

by Fritz on Jul 10, 2010 4:53 pm • linkreport

And how does a truck fit into a bike lane?

by Lance on Jul 10, 2010 5:46 pm • linkreport

You'd be surprised, given the way many trucks park in the bike lanes on Q and R on a regular basis. But basically, it should move over as far as it can. It will probably overlap the adjacent lane a little bit.

by David Alpert on Jul 10, 2010 5:57 pm • linkreport

There are no new facts that are "out." The police officer failed to apply laws that the driver broke, and therefore comes to the erroneous conclusion that the cyclist must be at fault. This is an unfortunate and well-known pattern from MPD's crash investigators.

by David Alpert on Jul 10, 2010 11:19 am

This is extremely true.

I don't know if it's due to the fact that they don't want more paperwork to do, or if they are protecting the city from liability - if it's just an ingrained reflex.

A huge oversized SUV hit me as I was driving a few years ago. The SUV had run the stop sign. It was clear. There were witnesses. The stop sign, however, was obstructed by some leaves from a branch, and was twisted. The police did not give that driver a ticket. My car was nearly totalled. I had to sue, and we settled.

I do not understand the reluctance. Those are just my guesses.

The cyclist case is much more serious of course.

by Jazzy on Jul 11, 2010 9:41 am • linkreport

I didn't realize that it was possible to get a speeding ticket in Maryland, let alone five!

I've been subjected to the "right hook" numerous times while riding my bike, and I try very hard to stay out of drivers' blind spots. However, I didn't realize the proper way to turn from a street with a bike lane when driving until I read it right here on GGW (and now I'm always careful to not only check for bikes but to signal and move into the lane before turning). It makes so much sense that I can't believe I didn't realize it before, but that goes to show how much awareness needs to be increased.

by Matthias on Jul 11, 2010 9:49 am • linkreport

The safest maneuver is of course for the cyclist to make eye contact with the motorist and if they can't do that then consider this situation where they yield to that motorist

Also, personally I don't use a bike in mixed traffic conditions if I can help it. Although I come from a biking family, I also come from a family where a grand aunt of mine died under similar circumstances as Alice Swanson (before I was born), and was instilled with a healthy fear of 'shared' road conditions. It's of course a personal decision, but if faced with choice of riding a bike to work or taking Metro in a place like DC, I'd choose the Metro. Again, personally, in a place like DC, I reserve bike riding for pleasure. And with all the buses and Metro .... and soon, the streecars, there are many safer alternatives out there for commuting purposes.

by Lance on Jul 11, 2010 6:47 pm • linkreport

Dear David and Lance,

I think it is simply a human trait to want to blame the victim. When my children were teen drivers, I anxiously perused the newspaper after each teen driverÂ’s death. Were they drinking? High? Were they on the cell phone? Not using their seat belt? I wanted to find something that the driver did wrong, so I could assure myself that it wouldnÂ’t happen to MY kids.

Alice was in a bike lane, she had a green light, and she was wearing a helmet. It was a beautiful, clear morning. She was a healthy, intelligent young person. How could her life have ended so horribly, crushed by a garbage truck? She must have done something wrong. There must be some reason she died. Death canÂ’t just be random.

If death is random, this could happen to my daughter, my son, my aunt, my brother, my wife.

This could happen to me.

So Lance, I can forgive you for blaming my daughter Alice for her own death.

I canÂ’t forgive the Metropolitan Police Department.

by Alice's Mom on Jul 12, 2010 10:43 am • linkreport

If David is correct that DDOT's intention was that the bikelane would continue through the intersection and not end in a 'merge' prior to the intersection, then perhaps the fault (if there is to be fault found) lies with DDOT painting 'merge' signage on the road prior to the intersection ... when it meant for the lane to not have to merge, but to continue through the intersection instead. Perhaps DDOT meant the dashed lane to mean 'car traffic should go half into the bike land if it wanted to make a right turn' (as David explained), but that exact dashed line signage is usually used to indicate merging lanes (e.g., an on ramp to a highway uses that dashed lane striping). I'm happy to hear that DDOT is considering repainting the bike lane to indicate what it really meant, but I'm not happy that such carelessness in the signage could have happened to begin with. I know David keeps saying it's okay for them to try stuff first and then adjust as needed, but I think using the wrong signage (and then correcting it) falls way beyond what David is talking about.

by Lance on Jul 12, 2010 10:41 pm • linkreport

Dotted lines on bike lanes don't mean merge, they mean this is the area cars can change into the bike lane.

Dotted lines between regular lanes don't mean merge, either, they mean it's okay to change lanes.

On highways, merges usually are signified by diagonal arrows on the roadway. Sometimes the lanes are dotted beforehand to show that changing lanes is allowed, but the actual merge involves an area without dots but with arrows.

I agree that this arrangement can be confusing for some, which is why it's good DDOT has started painting lanes through the intersection. However, just because some people assumed this was "merge signage" because they don't know the correct meaning of traffic control devices doesn't actually mean DDOT had "merge signage" there

by David Alpert on Jul 13, 2010 6:53 am • linkreport

@David On highways, merges usually are signified by diagonal arrows on the roadway. Sometimes the lanes are dotted beforehand to show that changing lanes is allowed, but the actual merge involves an area without dots but with arrows.

You're talking about the signs on the side of the road. I'm talking about the dashes painted directly on the surface. Dashed lines are indeed used at most spots on a highway on ramp where it merges into the main roadway. (The same dashed lines are used when a far left lane is ending and that traffic is required to merge one lane to the right.) Granted we don't use it everywhere, sometimes the regular continuous line just ends and the two lanes come together. But it is used commonly enough that most drivers recognize it as a 'your lane is ending, merge into the other lane.' I don't think any driver would ever interpret it to mean what you're saying DDOT meant it to mean.

by Lance on Jul 13, 2010 7:11 am • linkreport

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