Santa Monica Observer - Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

Is the City of Santa Monica too Incompetent to do Basic Road Design?

San Vicente and 7th is a death trap as currently constituted. Who will fix it and when?


The intersection of 7th and San Vicente is designed for failure

Is the city of Santa Monica too incompetent for basic road design?

Just outside my own apartment on the busy intersection of 7th and San Vicente, contradictory signs newly installed by the City of Santa Monica are endangering motorists every second of every day. On the road a simple painting declares that the right hand lane can go straight or left, and the left lane turns left. Across the street a sign repeats the message.

Look at the new, bright red sign on the corner however, and you are told that the right lane must turn right; implying the left lane can go straight.

Picture two cars coming up the hill from the canyon: one wants to go straight, the other wishes to turn left.

The car going straight has seen the "right lane must turn right" sign and assumes that 7th is a through street and it should go straight from the left, non-restricted lane.

The other vehicle, turning left, is a long-term resident who has driven this way countless times and knows from the painted arrows in the street and the still-present sign hanging in the intersection that you can turn left from either lane.

One car going straight from the left lane and one car turning left from the right lane- you would have to be a highly paid city traffic engineer not to see what is going to happen next.

One week into anarchy, motorists ignore the signs and, despite close calls, have been lucky.

I wonder if some equally freewheeling soul will risk imprisonment to remove the 'must turn right' instructions that are waiting to send a more trusting person to the morgue. In spite of warnings from residents, it seems the city isn't willing to do the job for us.


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