Tag Archives: YMCA

Homer Jones Drive complaint is revived

The in basket: Longtime friend Vickie Barrie wrote the other day, “Well, Travis, you answered this concern a few years ago, but it continues and I don’t think it was addressed quite right.

“Homer Jones Drive is a one-way street running past the Bremerton YMCA,” she said. “When I leave the YMCA, I go to the north end of the street, driving and staying in the left lane because I plan to make a left turn. Many times, another driver pulls up in the right hand lane and plans to turn left also (they may have forgotten that this is a one-way street).

“I have had fingers wagged at me and near-miss collisions. Could there be arrows painted on the road or a sign put up indicating that the right lane is for right turns and the left lane is for left turns?”

The out basket: Vickie is right that I didn’t give much credence to this when a reader first brought it to my attention a few years ago. It just didn’t seem likely that it was a common occurrence.

I quickly got a snarl from another reader saying it does happen regularly and now Vickie checks in with her update. She says it occurs in her presence a couple of times a month.

I’ve sat and watched the intersection off and on over the ensuing years, but it seems I always choose the wrong hour, early afternoon, as there is hardly any traffic at all while I’m there, let alone conflicts.

Jerry Hauth, in his first year as street engineer for Bremerton, says, “This is the first that I have heard of this one though I can see how it could happen. I am passing this on to the Road Department, with this email, to see what they think of the arrows idea.”

I’m still stumped by how a succession of drivers could make this mistake. Are they assuming cars in the curb lane on the left are parked, or parking? Perhaps some red paint on the curb to create a short no-parking zone would help a little.

Driver describes odd incidents at end of street past the Y

The in basket: Suzi Hubert writes, “Homer Jones Drive, which runs up past the East Bremerton YMCA is marked as one way. I turn left from the parking lot to head up to the point where you have to turn left or right (onto Schley Boulevard) and when turning left have kept to the left side of the street.

“Several times I have gotten to the point where I need to turn left and the car coming up the road on the right side of the road turns left in front of me. I always thought turning left from a one-way street would mean you hang to left side of the street. Maybe it’s meant to be a one-lane road but at that point of turning there is plenty of room for two lanes.”

I asked if it’s the same vehicle that does it and she said no, they are different each time.

The out basket: This is a puzzling complaint in that it’s easy to imagine it happening once, but several times is hard to explain.

I think that Lt. Pete Fisher of the Bremerton police, who I asked about this, senses the same thing I do, that perhaps Suzi travels too slow for many Y members or patrons from the Bremerton ice rink, who must use Homer Jones Drive to leave either facility.

“I would say there may be an issue where the writer maybe (is) holding up traffic,” Pete said, “and out of frustration they are going around her, or she is so far to the left, that other drivers think she is parked/parking and are going around her.  There could be violations for each, depending on the circumstances. There could be issues with the first driver impeding traffic and there could be issues for the other driver for improper passing, or improper lane use/change but that would be an officer discretion issues, based upon the officers’ observations.”

There is only one lane on Schley to receive cars turning left from Homer Jones Drive, so I think it very likely the impatient turners would be ticketed were Suzi to make her turn at the same time and they collided.

Certainly it would be helpful if lane lines and arrows were put on the pavement to separate the flows of vehicles and denote one lane for turning left and another for turning right. There are none now.

Explaining new Poplar Street intersection in Silverdale

The in basket: Ian MacKenzie wrote, “I was wondering if you have heard any explanation for the change that was made to the intersection of Silverdale Way and Poplars (Avenue),  by the new YMCA.

“I can understand the need for upgrading the intersection to accommodate the increased traffic with the YMCA,” he said, “but it really seems goofy the way they did it. You used to be able to make a left turn from northbound Silverdale Way to Poplars (two-way left-turn lane). Now you cannot.

“It seems as if it is forcing people to either turn into the parking lot further up Silverdale Way and come back through the parking lot or go all the way up to Ridgetop Boulevard and make a left at the light then make another left onto Poplars and come from the north.”

The out basket: Right-in-right-out accesses are a time-honored traffic control when left turns have proven dangerous or delay traffic behind left turners waiting for traffic to clear. In this case, it’s the danger element.

Jeff Shea, traffic engineer for Kitsap County Public Works, says, “Silverdale Way is one of the top 10 corridors for collisions in Kitsap County. One of the primary causes of accidents along that corridor is traffic entering and exiting from the many approaches and side roads.

“Even before the YMCA was built and Poplars was reconfigured, several collisions occurred at that location,” he said, “With the increased traffic generated by the development, we decided to restrict the movements at Poplars to right in, right out to preclude more collisions.

“The raised island at the intersection was built to prevent motorists from making illegal turn movements,” Jeff added.  “Signs and pavement markings are less effective as physical barriers in restricting traffic movements.

 

About new Y’s fuel efficient vehicle parking spaces

The in basket: Dan Barry of Silverdale writes, “I notice the new YMCA facility in Silverdale has a large number of parking spaces marked for ‘Low Emitting and Fuel Efficient Vehicles.’  I am curious why spaces are reserved for this particular class of vehicles.

“I’m also curious how it can be enforced since I’m sure the owner’s manuals of virtually every vehicle manufactured in at least the last 20 years, have language identifying the vehicles as having low emissions and being fuel efficient.”

The out basket’ Geoff Ball, senior executive director says the limitation was made in conjunction with Kitsap County, which shares ownership of the parking area. It has what is called “LEEDSilver” certification, which Geoff says is a green building, environmentally friendly approach used in many parts of the new YMCA. Pervious concrete that absorbs rainfall rather than letting if run off is another part of that effort.

There are 20 of the low-emission spaces among the 405 in the lot, Geoff said. They are more conveniently located than many of the general use spaces but not as much so as the handicapped spaces, which also have no curbs.

As for enforcement, that’s a self-regulating. There doesn’t seem to be a legally accepted definition of a low emission fuel efficient vehicle, he said.

“I can’t find any miles per gallon or carbon emissions definitions,” he said. “If other readers are more successful, I’d love to see it. ”

They hope not to see old pickup trucks or large SUVs in those spaces, he said. “It’s nice to see a hybrid there. If driver feels their vehicle is efficient,” the spot can be used.