Inquirer: Relax, you're not seeing double in the Liberty District

mowen@ledger-enquirer.comMay 11, 2014 

Mike Owen/mowen@ledger-enquirer.comA contractor installing new signs hasn't yet removed the old signs at the intersection of Eighth Avenue and Eighth Street.

This could be the work of a little-known Columbus Consolidated Government agency: the Department of Redundancy Department.

Whoever is responsible, today's issue was brought to our attention by Concerned Reader Bill, who sent the following email to Inquirer Central:

"I saw a city crew putting up a new stop sign near my office yesterday. Today I see that they actually put up two new signs, one on each side of the intersection.

"The kicker is that they didn't remove the old signs. Is this a union job where they have to wait for the designated signs removal crew to come and take down the old one?

"Another example of government efficiency."

As you might be able to deduce from the accompanying photo, the phenomenon -- phenomena, really, I guess -- are at the intersection of Eighth Avenue and Eighth Street near the Liberty District.

Perhaps it's part of an economic development program for the Liberty District.

They're trying to get people to stop twice, look around and possibly muse, "This would be a great place to open a business!"

And it would be, because unless the business you'd be opening is an historic theater, you wouldn't have any competition nearby.

But I digress, as I often do.

Let's ask Ron Hamlett, city traffic engineer, who is in charge of street signs. (I refuse to use the word "signage" because it sounds like a disease symptom.)

Hamlett told me that replacing signs in the area is part of the Sixth Avenue flood abatement and streetscape improvement project. A private contractor is installing the new signs and is responsible for pulling the old ones out, which he expects will be done pretty soon.

For the record, Hamlett said installing a new combination street/stop sign costs the city $250, but a simple stop or speed limit sign goes for just $125.

"That's what we charge developers when they build new subdivisions," he said.

Update

A few weeks back I wrote about a small sinkhole developing in the middle of an intersection near the small post office in Midtown.

The city said it first had to determine whether it was their problem or the Water Works' problem. They determined it was indeed a city problem, so a city crew went out, dug up the street a bit, repaired whatever it was that was causing the sinkhole, and patched things up smooth as silk.

Another crisis averted.

Seen something that needs attention, or maybe just an explanation? Contact me at mowen@ledger-enquirer.com or 706-571-8570.

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