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What's Wrong With This Picture?

June 24, 2012
  • Signs at Stone House Square that say "opposing traffic does not stop" are mistaken. They are supposed to refer to traffic entering the shopping center, not opposing traffic.
Photo by Andrew Schotz

The problem: Mark Barbernitz of Hagerstown noticed that signs at Stone House Square, off Leitersburg Pike (Md. 60), don’t describe the actual flow of traffic along Shank Farm Way, a private road within the shopping center.

He wrote in an email that signs near the entrance to Lowe’s say “‘opposing traffic does not stop’ which is incorrect. Entering traffic does not stop. Opposing traffic (that is traffic coming at you ...opposite you …) does have a stop sign. I am surprised it has been this way for some time.”

Another set of signs at a different part of Shank Farm Way says the same thing.

When a reporter observed the road, motorists in all directions appeared to understand how traffic was supposed to flow, regardless of the wording of the signs.

Who could fix it: Oekos, which owns the shopping center property

What they say: Kathleen A. Maher, Hagerstown’s planning director, wrote in a June 15 email that she looked at the site plan that was approved and talked to the city’s engineering staff.

She wrote: “The site plan calls for the sign to say ‘Incoming Traffic Does Not Stop’ at that intersection and across the way (by the bank) on the same internal private street. The traffic study for that development, with State Highway Administration concurrence, required this traffic circulation pattern to ensure that traffic entering the shopping center from Md. 60 did not back up into traffic on Md 60. Staff are aware of the inconsistency between the approved traffic signs and what was installed, and we will be contacting the property owners to make the necessary adjustments.”

She later added: “Engineering will get with the owners on the correct wording. The owners will have to install. I do not know how long the signs have been up.”

Contacted June 18, a property manager for the shopping center said he hadn’t heard from the city about the sign.

As of Friday, the city’s engineering department had not sent a letter to the property owner, City Engineer Rodney A. Tissue wrote in an email.

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 — Compiled by Andrew Schotz

Editor’s note: Each Monday, The Herald-Mail will highlight an infrastructure issue or other problem and will try to find out what is being done to fix or improve the situation. We will not tackle situations involving neighborhood or domestic disputes, or consumer problems.

If you are aware of a safety problem, a major annoyance or a pet peeve that one of our governmental bodies, an agency or an organization is responsible for fixing, send the information, and a photo if you have it, to:

What’s Wrong With This Picture
c/o The Herald-Mail newsroom
100 Summit Ave.
Hagerstown MD 21740
You can email the information to lindad@herald-mail.com.

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