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LJWorld.com weblogs puddleglum

Magical Stoplights

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GAWD do I hate the stoplights of Lawrence Kansas. Obviously, there is a higher power out there pulling our strings, making us wait for what seems like hours a year at local intersections. I can only guess what the traffic-commisioner-stoplight-programmer-puppeteer-commandant-in-control-of-the-timing has to gain by making lawrence motorists wastes thousands of gallons of fuel sitting at empty intersections. But, what I do know are the lights that have the most magical spell cast over them. You know the ones: twenty cars forced to stop on US-40 at folks road, so that one southbound car can turn left onto 6th. Somebody very important must live north up there. I notice the northbound light doesn't change with the same frequency...HMMM? Downtown lights make pretty good sense-they turn over regularly and predictably. Way to go city-you did something right. Remember when the city tried to synch up the lights on Iowa? Oh ya! You get get from 6th st. to 23rd in like 3-minutes. Not sure what happened there, but those were fun times. Somebody sure didn't like waiting at 15th st...er, excuse me-bob billings memorial developmental causeway. Aside from the waste of precious fuel (I live like the road warrior), we must consider the impact of thousands of cars forced to stop for a minority of cross-traffic and the environmental impact of thousands of cars sitting at intersections polluting our air.... I am sure that if you travel in Lawrence you have your own pet peeve-stoplights....Now then, it is time to speak up and be heard-give me your most hated stoplights, or I will make them all flashing red.

Comments

bearded_gnome 4 years, 8 months ago

you sir, PG, are a dangerous revolutionary.

you must check in immediately to the nearest reorientation center. society cannot support such people like you.

---I'll vote for you Pud. you gonna form a party, you know like there used to be the PLC, and now there's Grass Roots Action [so called].

Puddleglum Running initiative to Liberate Lawrence PRILL.

Campaign to Elevate and Elect Puddleglum [CREEP]

yard signs? picture for yard sign?

how about an action-packed web video?

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cozy 4 years, 8 months ago

oh lordy, do not get me started.

at 6 am, the light for iowa and 19th stops blinking yellow, only to turn red when it sees you coming and for what?!... F R I C K I N G no one coming up to iowa on 19th. it will just sit there red for the longest time, i have ran it before only after sitting there for 2 minutes being the O N L Y car at the intersection for that period of time. It is complete ignorance on the part of the city that is supposed to H E L P traffic flow, (isnt that what the sensors are for?!?!?!) that intersection actually used to go by the sensors, but now it is completely messed up. you can see that at rush hour when people are backed up past 21st street and almost to the peking taste turn. It is absolutely ridiculous! I have just started cutting through KU side roads to get to crestline and 15th, instead of it taking 10-15 mins and many many cycles of the light just to get to 19th.

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puddleglum 4 years, 8 months ago

schula (Anonymous) says…

Whose dumb idea was it to take out the left arrow when you are on Harper trying to turn left onto 23rd Street? There was an arrow and then last summer when new stoplights were put up — bam — the left turn arrow was gone.

ANy Ideas people?

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puddleglum 4 years, 8 months ago

TheOriginalCA (Anonymous) says…

I can drive all the way through Lincoln, NE on Route 2 without hitting a red light. There are TONS of lights through there too. That particular stretch of road is a prime example of good traffic engineering. As long as you go the speed limit (and get lucky enough not to get behind grandma) you hardly have to hit your breaks.

PG sez- This is what I am talking about. thanks for your comment.

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puddleglum 4 years, 8 months ago

bearded_gnome (Anonymous) says…

worth noting: Merrill/Richard Heckler has been a longterm member of the Traffic Safety commission. he does not believe in traffic flow, in fact he is opposed to people driving. he does believe in traffic constipation.

some of what you describe can be directly attributed to his handywork

PG sez- merrill, if you are behind this curtain of doom-I will never, ever read yourposts again-and I won't support health care reform.

in fact fella, it is a good thing the majority has to stop. it can induce introspection, self examination, and improved personal ethics.

PG sez-you mean stuff like picking your nose? check that.

who are you PG to be complaining? PG sez- not complaining-I am puddleglum, here to save all of you by changing our town one issue at a time. (vote for me)

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puddleglum 4 years, 8 months ago

Jersey_Girl (Anonymous) says…

puddleglum - either you are my dad or a member of our family. Lawrence lights recognize any vehicle linked to my father and turn red as soon as it is recognized. I have the added touch of turning all favorite radio stations to “commercial break” upon starting my vehicle.

PG sez- Yikes! I follow your dad everywhere.

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Jersey_Girl 4 years, 8 months ago

puddleglum - either you are my dad or a member of our family. Lawrence lights recognize any vehicle linked to my father and turn red as soon as it is recognized. I have the added touch of turning all favorite radio stations to "commercial break" upon starting my vehicle.

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bearded_gnome 4 years, 8 months ago

PG, worth noting: Merrill/Richard Heckler has been a longterm member of the Traffic Safety commission. he does not believe in traffic flow, in fact he is opposed to people driving. he does believe in traffic constipation.

some of what you describe can be directly attributed to his handywork.


a little antiwalmartian elitism, eh?

much of your complaints sound like the majority vs the minority. well buddy, we don't live in a democracy, the majority doesn't rule, and the majority can't just run over [pun intended] the minority.

in fact fella, it is a good thing the majority has to stop. it can induce introspection, self examination, and improved personal ethics.

after all, you know that being an american, we all deserve to be punished. we don't have $10 gas, and we insist on driving everywhere. we actually think that personal freedom and freedom to travel when and where we wish is somehow a right.

we are the virus infecting the earth, and if we have to stop and face a few red lights, then so be it. and who are you PG to be complaining?

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kthxbi 4 years, 8 months ago

I hate the way the lights are rigged too, but I find it hard to believe it has anything to do with the wealth distrobution in Lawrence. Am I naive?

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schula 4 years, 8 months ago

Whose dumb idea was it to take out the left arrow when you are on Harper trying to turn left onto 23rd Street? There was an arrow and then last summer when new stoplights were put up -- bam -- the left turn arrow was gone.

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TheOriginalCA 4 years, 8 months ago

I can drive all the way through Lincoln, NE on Route 2 without hitting a red light. There are TONS of lights through there too. That particular stretch of road is a prime example of good traffic engineering. As long as you go the speed limit (and get lucky enough not to get behind grandma) you hardly have to hit your breaks.

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farfle 4 years, 8 months ago

Don't worry, the traffic "engineers" have a ready excuse for everything- "it's for upstream traffic, etc.- but the bottom line is that I've lived in cities that were three times as crowded where the traffic was better.

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puddleglum 4 years, 8 months ago

extra minute? its not the extra minute that upsets me, it is the bizarre function of lawrence stoplights that befuddle me. Other towns have stoplights that cycle traffic through with regularity-our town has lights that cycle traffic according to the neighborhood (wealth) they adjoin to. this needs to change. No more special privilage to the wealthy. Especially at the other taxpayers' costs.

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RoeDapple 4 years, 8 months ago

puddleglum, With over 2 million miles professionally and nearly half that privately behind me I have learned to not let traffic or associated hardware upset me. Waiting a little longer gives you time to assess your next move, and maybe the clown who runs the light won't put you or anyone else in the hospital or grave. Use the extra minute to prepare for the next.

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Leslie Swearingen 4 years, 8 months ago

Let us not forget that if you are a young mother, you have time to hop out, change that diaper, find treats for the others kids, and read them a story. This is an opportunity for quality time with the family. Let's all take a drive!

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puddleglum 4 years, 8 months ago

6th & congressional: nothing worse than stopping at the bottom of a hill just to let some wal-mart shopper cut through the congressional neighborhood to go buy toilet paper.

23 & iowa left-turn east or west-bound: just too short to get all of the lane through-what's the deal with that?

6th & wakarusa: no matter where you are coming from, I guarantee this light will be red by the time you get to it.

6th & kasold: 80 cars westbound/eastbound stopped to let a small group of maybe 6 cars get onto 6th st.

6th & massachusetts: I don't know how to make it any better-but I know it can't be any worse.

19th & Tennessee: I once read an entire Danielle Steele novel at this light. Never even saw a car on 19th. sup?

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