Walking the streets in Albany lately can be hazardous to your health. The past several weeks along Central Avenue there has been loss of life due to pedestrian/motor vehicle accidents. While these accidents are horrendous, they are just as they are. Accidents. In an accident, a human being has little chance against a four thousand pound motor vehicle traveling forty MPH. What needs to be done is simple. Police must start enforcing speed limits, rolling stops through stop signs and turn on reds. Pedestrians must limit their street crossing to designated crosswalks (when possible), but most importantly, and I cannot stress this enough, especially at night, wear some clothing that is not dark in color. I realize that Central Avenue is a well lit street in Albany, but up further west of Rte. 155 — where several fatal accidents happen each year — you can’t see someone walking in the roadway until you are almost on top of them. People driving the vehicles are not always at fault. ……….Speaking of streets. I don’t remember seeing this in the Times Useless, but I read with interest a blog posted by a College of St. Rose student about the streets in the vicinity of the college. Seems that there was a study commissioned to evaluate implementation of the “Complete Streets” initiative on Madison Avenue from Manning Blvd. to Lark Street, and Western Avenue from somewhere to somewhere. Complete Streets is an obscure law passed by the state a few years back to give road designers some sort of guide to go by when designing new roads. Notice how I stressed the word new. The concept however, does not work in an urban area as old as Albany. This is an update: I had written earlier that “Complete Streets” legislation was passed unanimously by the Common Council. It was passed unanimously by committee, but won’t go to a vote of the full council until next month. Back to the study. It was performed by Creighton Manning, a well respected engineering firm whose specialty is infrastructure. They took Western Avenue out of the equation immediately — I wonder how long that took them to accomplish that — and focused on Madison Avenue. What they came up with was a couple of options, none of which were advantageous to the bike rider. One bike lane. That must be nice when you have bikes going both ways. A bike lane shared by parked cars. That could be worse than walking on Central Avenue. There is no room for turnouts. The only thing helpful was the center turning lane. All you can do is improve the handicap access and install new curbing, sidewalks and pave the street (paving would go a long way for bike safety). In other words: Like I mentioned earlier, ”Complete Streets” doesn’t work in Albany. I wonder who pushed for the commissioning of this study (I can’t imagine who?) And what did this cost? I hope that all the nice conceptual drawings they provided were worth it. What a complete waste of money. Somebody likened the rehab of Delaware Avenue something like Complete Streets. Not even close. All they did was redo the utilities, pave the road, and install new curbs, sidewalks, and lighting. It’s still the same congested street as it was before, not one bit more driver or pedestrian friendly. If you want to see a example of “Complete Streets”, go to Western Avenue from the city line to Fuller Road. With the exception of no turning lane, that is ”Complete Streets” (Note: that is in Guilderland.) ……….What a complete ass. Friday, after playing poorly in the second round of the Honda Classic, Rory McIlroy walked of the golf course after a disastrous front nine. McIlroy, who is the top ranked player in the world said that his mind wasn’t on the game. Hey Rory!! People, your fans, come out and pay exorbitant prices to watch you play golf. If you want to tank a tournament, at least play out the round, then you can throw your sponsored provided two thousand dollar golf clubs into the nearest water. Do you think for one moment Arnie Jack, or Tiger would even consider doing that. Those guys are competitors. Geez.
And that is “The Daily Take”