Leaning light pole signals a hazard

January 22, 2008

THE PROBLEM -- A pole supporting a traffic signal and street light at Greenspring Avenue and Druid Park Drive had been leaning since it was hit by a car about a year ago.

THE BACKSTORY -- A Watchdog reader called to report that the pole, on the northwest edge of Druid Hill Park, had been leaning since the accident.

The reader said that city workers had put a support cable on the pole, but that high winds recently snapped the cable, causing the pole to tilt again.

A construction and maintenance crew secured the pole with a guy wire about a year ago as a temporary remedy, said Baltimore Department of Transportation spokeswoman Adrienne Barnes.

After Watchdog alerted the department that the 22-foot strain pole was tilting again, traffic signal maintenance workers investigated and replaced the wire as a temporary measure.

They determined that the galvanized steel pole is a "control" pole that supports a control cabinet, which operates the traffic signals.

"They're going to replace the cabinet or base of the pole, so we can get that pole up and going," Barnes said.

A replacement pole should be installed this week, she said.

WHO CAN FIX THIS -- Felicia Oliver, chief of traffic engineering for the Baltimore Department of Transportation, 410-396-6905. City residents can also call 311 to report problems.

Liz F. Kay

UPDATE

Patrons of the Lyric Opera House will soon have an easier time getting to performances.

Cones have gone up around repairs of a crumbling curb cut that nearly caused a woman attending a Johnny Mathis concert to fall out of her wheelchair last month.

And the city Department of Transportation has found funding to put in 10 wheelchair-accessible curb cuts at crosswalks, agency spokeswoman Adrienne Barnes said last week. Engineers are surveying the area and designing the ramps. Construction could begin in July.

Also, the city Department of Public Works has reinforced a chain-link fence between a sidewalk and a Public Works stream restoration project on North Charles Street, north of Cold Spring Lane.

Larry Kilduff, executive director of facilities management for the Johns Hopkins University, had reported the problem, which posed danger to students walking to and from Hopkins, Loyola College and the College of Notre Dame.

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