Talk about a short stop!
The city has installed a stop sign in the middle of a residential Gowanus block, leaving residents angry and confused over what is perhaps the most unusually placed traffic sign in the entire borough. Carroll Street construction workers say the Department of Transportation ordered them to erect the sign after they closed down a stretch of sidewalk between Hoyt and Bond streets, but even they think it is bizarre.
“People complain all the time, but, unfortunately to follow DOT guidelines, we need this,” said Chris Gleckler, a superintendent overseeing construction of a condo building for Sterling Equity. “We have the sidewalk closed, and to do that we needed a crosswalk, and for that we needed a stop sign.”
Most motorists just drive straight past the sign — which has no official Department of Transportation markings — not expecting to see one in such an odd location, according to one block resident.
“People blow past it, because no one looks for a stop sign in the middle of the block,” said Alex Konyk.
But even locals who know it is there do the same thing, Konyk said — and there doesn’t seem to be anyone stopping them.
“Locals don’t stop for it, I don’t,” he said. “I can’t imagine cops would hand out tickets for that.”
The transportation department generally avoids installing stop signs in the middle of blocks, according to a spokesman, and only did so here because the agency considered pedestrians at risk without it. And at least one local agrees.
“It’s good, because we have animals driving cars down here,” said one block resident, who curtly refused to give his name.