What went north may go south Reversal proposed for one-way block

February 22, 1996|By Edward Lee | Edward Lee,SUN STAFF

For years, traffic in the 1190 block of Ramblewood Drive in Cape St. Claire was two-way, with a steep hill that limited visibility.

After a minor head-on collision in 1994 at the crest of the hill and complaints from neighbors, the block was made one-way northbound.

Now, the one-block stretch between Sea Green and Chestnut Tree drives may be changed to one-way southbound because of several complaints about the inconvenience of having to circle the block to leave the community.

"I don't want to hear that garbage," said Phyllis Gordon, a 22-year resident of Ramblewood Drive who opposes the change. "This is going to create a lot of havoc."

Before the change in 1994, traffic volume was more than 1,000 vehicles a day, said Betty Dixon, a spokeswoman for the county Department of Public Works. The volume decreased to about 740 a day when the street was made one-way.

"The community wanted to have it southbound because they felt it was too much morning congestion with people trying to leave and everyone going down Green Holly Drive," Ms. Dixon said of the recent proposal. "It was just increasing traffic volume on Green Holly to exit the community."

Cape St. Claire Improvement Association supports the change.

But Thomas Guthrie, who lives on the north side of the street, said he would be unable to climb the hill to leave his neighborhood when the street was snowy or icy.

"I'm stuck," said Mr. Guthrie, who has lived on Ramblewood for 17 years. "I don't know what the heck I'm going to do. I'll just be able to back down the hill."

Mrs. Gordon said the problem is speeding, not the hill. She said she would like the two-way flow returned to Ramblewood.

"They could put a speed bump in or put a stop sign in" at Ramblewood and Sea Green, Mrs. Gordon said. "I just want two-way restored."

Others said one-way traffic in either direction is better than two-way traffic.

"I like it because it slows traffic down," said Douglas Sweely, an eight-year resident of Ramblewood. "I personally think it's a good idea, one-way either way."

Ms. Dixon said the change to one-way southbound must be approved by the Postal Service, which would have to move mailboxes from the east side of the road to the west side.

After that, the county would put up signs for two weeks warning residents and drivers about pending the change.

Those signs would be replaced by two large "Do Not Enter" signs at Ramblewood and Chestnut Tree. Detour signs directing drivers to Green Holly Drive also would be posted.

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