Friday, August 3, 2007

how to slow drivers without sending them a picture of their car in the mail . . .

Crossing the street at Route 29 and Stewart Lane: as of this writing, this family is still waiting in the median. And where could they walk to, anyway?

In East County - where crossing the street all too often requires a short prayer and a long dash - the latest technique in "traffic calming" is called "scarifying."

The Post's Dr. Gridlock explains how Montgomery County wore the road down on Calverton Boulevard in Calverton, tricking drivers into thinking that they were doing construction, only to leave it alone for a year. With the rumble of unmilled asphalt below their tires, motorists were supposed to be scared out of hitting sixty on Calverton's wide, sexy turns.

But is "scarifying" enough for drivers that just don't care about the crosswalk?

Just Up The Pike spoke to the Lindes, a Downtown Silver Spring couple for whom walking is their main form of transportation. The place where all of East County's highways come together would be a pedestrian nightmare for the able-bodied - but for the Lindes, who are both disabled, crossing the street can be a near-death experience. NEXT WEEK, we'll find out how they're trying to get drivers to slow down without sending road crews to tear up the asphalt.

And if you've ever held your life in your hands to cross a street, let me know! I'd like to do more stories on the pedestrian experience in East County. E-mail me at danreed at umd dot edu.

2 comments:

Sligo said...

They must be new to the area. The Silver Spring method of street crossing is to simply walk out in front of the oncoming traffic. They'll stop. Usually.

rd said...

In the last week, I've almost gotten run over twice by dumbasses that turn left on a green light and don't look for pedestrians crossing legally. Damn that pisses me off...