East Trinity Property Owner Requests Crosswalk – and Will Pay to Have It Installed

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Another interesting item on tonight’s Decatur City Commission meeting.

The owner of 125 East Trinity Ave is requesting the installation of a crosswalk on East Trinity Place between Church Street and North McDonough Street and will pay the cost of installation.  This crosswalk would be similar in scale to the one on Ponce near Starbucks downtown, according to a letter to the Commission from Oakhurst Realty’s Fisher Paty.

The stated reasons for the crosswalk are…

  • To provide a safer alternative to crossing E. Trinity Place. There is considerable vehicular congestion with lots of turning at both the N. McDonough and Church Street crosswalks where we have seen or been a party to several ·’close calls..

  • To slow down vehicular traffic on E. Trinity Place

  • To better integrate the retailers and activate the sidewalk on the south side of E. Trinity Place

If approved, I wonder what form the crosswalk would take, since there have been many issues with the faux-brick crosswalks since their installation a few years back.

Map of the location of the crosswalk, courtesy of City Commission agenda

67 thoughts on “East Trinity Property Owner Requests Crosswalk – and Will Pay to Have It Installed”

      1. In a way, you’re right. But there’s a psychology to where people choose to cross streets, not just logic and safety. I don’t do this particular crossing but i sometimes cross illegally to Dancing Goats from the parking spots across the street from it instead of walking 50 yards to the proper crossing walk at Nelson Ferry. Don’t know why but going to the legal crossing walk doesn’t feel reasonable there, maybe because of the bend in the road. But, further up the road on Ponce, towards town, I religiously use the crossing walks. It feels different somehow. Similarly, you’ll never prevent all middle school kids to avoid crossing the train tracks to get to Renfroe from Commerce. Walking east or west to proper crossings just defies their sense of what’s reasonable.

          1. Hey, there’s two legal parking spots in front of either The Marlay or Farmburger. You can cruise right in there much easier than parking behind Dancing Goats which is impassable most of the time. But good point that one could drink at The Marlay and then sober up at Dancing Goat.

            1. I went to Fleet Feet a couple of Saturdays ago and there was absolutely no parking anywhere near by for their business.Between Dancing Goats and yoga they must really get screwed. After circling for ages I wound up parking well past the toy park up on Nelson Ferry in front of houses. I was tempted to park in the post office lot since it was Sat. but was afraid of getting booted. Does anyone know if the post office boots when they are not open?

              1. Don’t know but I think it’s less likely there than at Farmburger or The Marlay where they probably monitor parking for their customers. A few errands is probably not risky. Far West Ponce has certainly picked up in recent years. (I’m always surprised that there’s enough folks to buy scooters and way expensive baby clothes but that wonderful men’s shop couldn’t make it there.) Now it’s just MidWest Ponce that has vacancies.

                1. “but that wonderful men’s shop couldn’t make it there.”

                  That’s because men wear their clothes until they can’t (at least this one does).

          1. I know there is an issue with the steep grade of Northern at this intersection but it is otherwise perfect for a roundabout. How do you envision the “creekwalk” here?

          1. True that the crossing is legal without a crosswalk, however the crosswalk gives the added benefit of requiring cars to stop. You’re a bit more on your own when crossing without a marked crosswalk.

  1. Took me awhile to figure out exactly where this is. Chick-fil-A at the top. Original First Baptist on right. Old post office on the bottom left. OK, now I get it.
    I agree with the posters who seem to say, do we really need another crosswalk here, not far from two other crosswalks and no large scale pedestrian businesses nearby? It has nothing to do with the cost but with the feeling that our governments, both city and schools, are eager to do anything to increase their regulatory power. Bike lanes, traffic islands, speed bumps, sharerows, cottages, moratoriums, domestic relationships, smoking restrictions, IB, Day of Silence, redistricting, bond referendums and strategic plans all feed the growing power of small town Leviathan.
    Some of us worry about the increasing power of government at the national level but a greater concern should be what’s happening in our little town. Some of you say, “But it feels so good!” Yeah, that’s the problem.

        1. Mr. B. is entitled to his opinion, and I find the anonymous sniping to be more offensive than anything he says. He was an excellent teacher to the community’s children, and worked hard for this community. To try to shame him in this way is contemptible.

          1. I think the problem here is that Mr. B likely treats DM like he did his classroom– throwing out some big statements to get the discussion going. I used to have a civics teacher just like that and he was my fave of all time. However, on DM, the discussion is already going/doesn’t need prodding with quick and/or inflamatory statements. Most of the people here come back not only due to the awesome local issues coverage, but becuase the discussion on DM is (usually) very thoughtful, unlike AJC or other nationa newsites. I don’t always agree with some that regularly post here, but I value their contributions. I also value Mr. B’s input when, as he sometimes does, he gives us some thoughtful commentary or background. I wish he would steer his posts in that direction so that the DM community doesn’t tune him out, becuase I’m sure he does have some valuable input, opinions and ideas.

          2. Moderator???? this is really ugly here. I am embarrassed by some of these posts. Mr B makes a valid point about increasing regulations and people jump on here to bash him. Agree or disagree, but don’t disrespect.

            1. I speak not because I disagree with his recent posts. It is because the statements that appear irrational, ALSO convey suggestions of deep enmity and disrespect to others. There would need to be significant redeeming value to outweigh such effects. The disorganized nature of the posts in question do not comport with a motive to incite discussion, provoke thought, or present a philosophy in support of anything. I immediately tried to edit my post to reflect my full thought, which is that he is either senile, or attempting to appear to be so. The edit was somehow deleted. Maybe, somehow, he thinks it is provocative in a productive way. If so, I will still say he is attempting to look senile as a means to that end. If I were to pretend to be racist, for example, I could hardly blame someone for coming to that conclusion.

              1. So you don’t disagree with his posts, you just find them irrational and borne of deep disrespect for others. Makes perfect sense.

                1. I said I was speaking not because I disagreed. That does NOT mean I agree. I was speaking to the incoherence of the post in question because it obscures any opinion, either for or against.

            2. “a valid point about increasing regulations”

              Explain to me, please, how a business owner’s offer to pay for a crosswalk is comparable to the city offering couples the choice to register their partnership, and how these two things, among others, are somehow part of a valid point about excess regulation.

              1. Ok, but first let me say this, I hesitate to even respond to you you because your posts (and others that seem to like to tee off on Mr B) come across to me as quite mean spirited, but maybe I am misreading them. I will give you the benefit of the doubt here, but caution you to re read some of what you have recently written.

                Mr B is referring to yet another spot our local government is layer a new rule. This particular one being a stop for the cars at this particular mid-block anytime someone goes in and out of that building and wants to cross the street. Is it reasonable? I don’t know. They can already cross at either corner. There is not a business directly across the street that a large amount of traffic goes to. It seems like something that serves a few people. Maybe this is appropriate for what is coming on Trinity and drivers need to get use to it. I think it is worth dialog without people taking personal shots at a respected and valued member of our community. Maybe I want a crosswalk in my West Ponce mid-block so my kids can more easily get to their friends house and I have the money to pay for it. Should I be allowed to do that? Do you see where this could go?

                Mr B’s point about increasing rules and regulations in our local govt and schools is totally valid. Whether it is about IB in schools (and believe me, if you don’t have a kid in the high school right now, you have no idea, IB is not all great for all the kids), more tickets for parking, annexation or unified code, our local govt is growing its power right now. Maybe it’s good, maybe it’s bad; I don’t know. Not sure I like all of it myself. Don’t know how you get that his posts are disrespectful to others, I read it as a simply as warning.

                1. “Don’t know how you get that his posts are disrespectful to others, I read it as a simply as warning.”

                  I wasn’t referring to any one post or any one topic, but to a history that includes, among other insults, calling supporters of gay-friendly policies “pimps” ( a post which I believe was removed).

                  1. so you criticize this current post (and anyone that defends his right to an opinion), but it is not this post that you are criticizing but one that has been deleted. oh. that makes a lot of sense.

                    1. I, and others, were critical of the post because it was incoherent, like many of his other ones. A right to an opinion does not mean others don’t have a right to mock that opinion. As for referring to the deleted post, that was but one example meant to counter those like you complaining about him being disrespected here. I could name others, but from here on out I’m going to take JT’s advice from a different thread and ignore his comments because they are not worth my time.

                    2. That is where I am having trouble with your post (and some of the others). Disagreeing with and mocking are two very different things. Mocking is disrespectful and negative, and makes the poster lose credibility IMO.

                      And I think his post is not at all incoherent. He writes in a very conversational way, throwing in some interesting historical tidbits about the buildings in the photo that some of the other readers found interesting as well. Then he clearly states his opinion backing it up with a reason. If you want to read incoherent, try following some of the mockers follow ups in this thread.

                    3. Mocking is disrespectful and negative, and makes the poster lose credibility IMO.”

                      Fair enough. But why are you such a defender of his posts, which are often suffused with mockery of people in Decatur who don’t share his politics? (again, I’m not necessarily talking about this specific issue, but a history)

                    4. hope this doesn’t double post, seem to be having trouble posting in the right spot…will try again:

                      Brianc, thanks for asking. Maybe we can find some common ground here and help this board move forward in a more positive way on the Mr B sensitivity that seems to have developed.

                      My oldest child was lucky enough to have had Mr B a few years ago before he retired. If you ask her about him, she gets a goofy smile on her face and says, “Mr. B is just awesome.” He is one of those few teachers that have a lasting impact on the kids, inspirational and thought provoking. High school kids can be, well… self centered and hard to deal with, and he managed to get through in a extremely positive way, and that earned my respect. Ask any of the DHS graduates that had him for their list of top 5 teachers and he would be on almost all the lists. He has a deep respect for all the students that have come through his doors, and I think if you read his speech to the graduates of 2012, you might get a more accurate read on him (google ‘Chris Billingsley graduation speech’). He has been a hometown hero (as is diane loupe above), which is a result of extraordinary community involvement and service. I do not agree with everything he thinks (we love the bike lane on W Ponce) but I respect and value his opinion. Nobody wants this board to be an echo chamber, so diversity of ideas and politics should be tolerated and respected.

                    5. Jumping in for a sec- I think people are less responding to his particular post, and more to his pattern of communication here which mainly consists of finding any story he can draw a loose correlation to the federal government with, and then using it as his soap box . What he does on a regular basis here is no different in my OPINION than seeing a heart attack story in the AJC and then the usual suspects coming along writing “Obummers and Dumbocrcrats death panels” when one obviously has nothing to do with the other. I consider what he does trolling with a bigger vocabulary. I like DEM, loved Decatur’s Token Republican and what they offer here. CB isn’t interested in enlightening anyone, he just wants a reaction. And that’s classic…

                    6. There seems to be a huge difference in the brand Mr. B built at DHS and the brand Chris Billingsley has created here on DM. With a huge chasm between. He is likely the single most talked about person in Decatur at any given moment over the past few years.

                    7. Agree, I have decided that it’s a mystery, like the holy trinity, how both can exist and be the same Mr. B. Nothing will take away from how special he was to so many students. Always wondered if the administration loved him as much….

                2. wponcer said: “Mr B is referring to yet another spot our local government is layer a new rule.”

                  Maybe the reason folks got all worked up this time is because that’s not really what’s happening. The rules re: the relationship between cars and peds in different scenarios already exist. No new rules are being created or injected here.

                  What is (potentially) happening is nothing more than an adjustment to public space at the request of free market interests. The only reason city government is even involved is because they already have (again, nothing new here) responsibility for our streets.

                  It’s one thing to maintain the position that limited government is preferable. That’s all good. But a private initiative, leveraging private money, requiring little more than a rubber stamp from government doesn’t, as best I can tell, contradict this goal. The only way it could be more Libertarianesque would be if the building owner bypassed government entirely and simply went out and created the crosswalk himself in the middle of the night (which would be pretty funny, btw).

                  There’s a frequent tension between Mr. B’s apparent principles, what’s actually taking place in any given situation, and the siege mentality tone inherent in some of his posts. Personally, I get a kick out of a lot of it, and also really appreciate his long-timer perspective on Decatur through the years, but I can see how folks might get riled up.

                  1. Scott said: “There’s a frequent tension between Mr. B’s apparent principles, what’s actually taking place in any given situation, and the siege mentality tone inherent in some of his posts.”

                    Yes. And again I’ll ask how “domestic relationships” fit into that supposedly valid argument about excess regulations–unless it is just one item on a list of things that make cranks crankier

          3. “Mr. B. is entitled to his opinion,”

            But in your view, apparently no one else is. It’s ok for him to be disrespectful of a majority of the people here, but how dare anyone treat him in a similar fashion? And what is it with your annoying obsession with people not using their names on this site? I can guarantee you my opinion would include language a bit more forceful if it were in person and not “anonymous.” What is it you want, the chance to run background checks on any names you see connected to opinions you don’t like? I have no idea who you are, or whether that’s your real name, and couldn’t care less.

    1. Just curious, but who exactly is the “small town Leviathan” here? The government or the local property owner who is paying for this project to attract more business to his building? Seems to me that this is actually an example of local regulation yielding to the desire of the market and the capitalistic money men. I guess it’s just hard for someone with “gub’mint is killin’ us!” blinders on to see it, but I think Ayn Rand would wholeheartedly approve of this crosswalk.

      1. That corner was the former location of First Baptist Church. The building along Trinity was the education building.

      2. if I’m not mistaken, the Green’s building may still have “Decatur Federal Building” (or something like that) engraved at the top entrance.

        1. Since the date on the “new” Post Office is 1964, one would assume that the Green’s building was the Post Office prior to that.

    2. i’m pretty sure the gov’t always had the power to put in crosswalks, it’s not much of an increase in power, just an application of a long running one.

  2. I think it’s a great partnership (and fairly empowering) that a local building/business owner wants to do something to improve his neighborhood and being allowed to do so. The city is giving up a little bit in its authority to control its right-of-way and the owner is giving up some resources to make improvements. This is what we should be doing with our local roads given the restrictions of the state routes that cut through town.

    1. I’d take this one step further. In instances where the street’s not locally controlled and the city can’t just work with residents or businesses towards improvement, I fully support all forms of creative citizen uprising (non-violent, natch). If folks on Candler, for example, want to go buy a couple tubs of reflective paint and lay down some bike striping or renegade crosswalks in the middle of the night, I say more power to ’em. Some random DOT “company man” reading specs out of the Green Book has no idea and no meaningful consideration of what people want right outside their front doors.

      Yes, that stuff all gets removed but it’s an important step towards the redistribution of power when it comes to transportation policy and neighborhood quality of life. Rise up!

      1. But this would be really confusing to some people. I mean, according to some, all this pedestrian/biking hoo-ha is nothing but government over-reach, telling us how to get around town and making it hard on good ol’ Americans in god’s chosen transportation–that being the vehicle powered by the internal combustion engine. If you are telling some people that they can actually exercise their freedom by getting themselves around town with their own powerful legs AND stick it to the government by creating a democratically-decided upon crosswalk (no community strategic planning involved) then some people’s heads just might explode. This sort of free-market pedestrianism doesn’t seem to fit the stories told of Agenda 21 and evils of urban planning in the dark corners of the internet where some people must get their opinions. So how could this be?

  3. I work in the building and have for more than 3 years…..this crosswalk is something that is sorely needed as people cross there (including me) quite frequently and don’t walk the 50 yards up or down to sit and wait for 5 mins at those crosswalks. Personally, I applaud the owners for ponying up the dough to take care of this.

    1. Clearly, TSB, you are unaware that you are only feeding the flames of the grand communist takeover here in Decatur. You may need some re-education.

  4. I, and others, were critical of the post because it was incoherent, like many of his other ones. A right to an opinion does not mean others don’t have a right to mock that opinion. As for referring to the deleted post, that was but one example meant to counter those like you complaining about him being disrespected here. I could name others, but from here on out I’m going to take JT’s advice from a different thread and ignore his comments because they are not worth my time.

    *this was a response to wponcer but is in the wrong spot for some reason.

  5. Should Mr. B be banded from all further postings? Further should he relinquish his Decatur citizenship and never pay taxes there again? I prefer postings to be of one mind ie mine.(good) We prefer postings to be like ours. (even better). “Why can’t Mr. B be more like me” Rex Harrison: My Fair Lady

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