July 01, 2013

Memphis Monday: Streets, Intersections, and Neighborhoods

I did these at the intersection of Poplar and Ridgeway, one of the more ridiculous Memphis intersections - especially at 5:00 PM. I usually have time for a quick sketch there because the light is very long, and I can sit through up to three of them before I get through it.

It always makes me wonder what the City engineers where thinking when they designed the traffic lights for this intersection.

I used to work with the City engineers at my old job, and there was one in particular who I was working with to get artist-designed signs put up in an old Memphis neighborhood. He was being a stickler for following the letter of the rules for putting up neighborhood signs, and not giving an inch on my very good argument for why we should consider this neighborhood differently. So I tried to go over his head, but it didn't work. I still sometimes feel bad about that.

However, when I drive through Orange Mound and see the neighborhood signs on the perimeters of the neighborhood, where they don't even make any sense, and not straight down Park Avenue where you might see them and think "Ohh, so this is Orange Mound! Look at those great signs! This is a neighborhood, maybe I should slow down, maybe I should consider that people live there lives here," - I don't feel bad for trying everything I could to do the right thing.

So, good job, Particular City Engineer. Way to choose NOT to make a difference in this historic neighborhood.

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