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This Old Crack House

From log house to farmhouse. Farmhouse to townhouse. Townhouse to apartment house. Apartment house to crack house. Crack house to our house. Our house to our home.

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Tuesday, February 28, 2006

36 Degrees of Doneness

Glazing windows when it is 36 degrees INDOORS is not fun at all. Especially when you have to cut some glass to replace broken panes while you are at it. Regardless of the cold temperatures, I was able to re-glaze two six pane sashes and one, one pane sash in an afternoon. I was amazed at my glass cutting skills. Normally I break the glass that I am cutting, but not this time. The secret must be tapping the glass with the club end of the glass cutter (which I picked up on "Ask This Old House" last season) and oiling the cutting wheel of course which I had learned from someone who makes stained glass windows.
My hands were once again smothered in DAP 33 window putty. Which is great for putting fingerprints on any surface and leaving me with that all-telling glazed look.......

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Blow Me!

Since I have been throwing all the corny jokes around about my caulk lately it prompted me to recollect an incident from my younger days when I lived in Pittsburgh.
There was this guy I knew that worked in "Bill and Walts Hobby Shop" in the downtown area. Someone came in the store and asked for such-and-such and this guy I knew said "Blow me!"
The customer said with a surprised look on his face "Huh? and the employee said once again "Blow me!"
"I beg your pardon?"
"Below me, in the display case!"

That is a true story.....

Speaking of things that blow. Did anyone see "Ask This Old House"? Tom showed some couple how to inject blown-in insulation on one single space in their wall then left them to finish the rest of their house on their own..... Bastard!

Friday, February 24, 2006

Suspense! The Meeting.

If you haven't read my "Suspense" series of articles then you may want to look at the posts made last month that start with that title. Otherwise you won't have a clue what I am writing about.

Well, we had the first public meeting regarding the Wayne Ave/ Wilmington Ave intersection improvement project here in Dayton. The room was full. Standing room only. My guess is that there were well over 100 people present. The city engineers and traffic department were there in force with some aerial photographs and large scale planning drawings but absolutely NO plans. They didn't mention the plan they submitted to get the funding and passed the plan proposing the removal of the "House on the Hill" off as rumor. They described the planning process and the concerns for air quality, public safety and congestion at this intersection in 10 minutes and opened the floor up for questions. The idea being that they would gather information and then put some plans together once they had a feeling for what the public would deem "acceptable". It was a smart move really. I think many people in the planning department have been reamed a new asshole over submitting the 1960s proposal for improving this intersection. They made it clear that they would not be touching anyone's house but that they may need to acquire some 5 foot wide strips of property along the roads if they were going to have to widen Wayne Ave. The use of eminent domain was a big issue. The consensus of the public opinion was that it should not be used to "improve" this intersection at all.

I asked for the results of the traffic survey done 4 weeks ago. They did a song and dance around this. I don't think they are comfortable with the results. They didn't get specific but admitted that the traffic pattern has not significantly changed in the last 20 years and may actually have gone down a little. They are under the impression that people are using some of the residential streets to avoid the intersection which is total crap! They are cutting through the neighborhood because it is the shortest route across a few major streets.

There were many good points brought up and some good questions asked but a few things that stood out to me were;

1) that there was no objection to the idea of a Stewart Street cul-de-sac which would actually reduce the number of traffic lights preceding the intersection.

2) that the junction where Anderson intersects with Wayne could benefit from a center turning lane to reduce back up of traffic in the morning.

3) widening the road at the Wayne/ Wilmington intersection was not really necessary and that doing #1 above may actually solve some problems..

The general public at the meeting indicated that the engineers should try to improve the traffic flow with signs and synchronized lights before they should widen any roads. None of this should cost the proposed $1.9 million ($1.3 million in federal funds) allocated to the project.

The next meeting is scheduled for April 26th or there-abouts when we will be presented with some plans. I'll bet they use up the whole $1.9 million when they work out the plans.

I calculate that at my current rate of around 3 posts a week, it will be about 30 posts before an update on this issue. So now I can get back to blogging about important stuff like how exciting it is to strip paint from doors, whether my sausage stuffer is more valuable without yellow paint, the joys of scraping glazing compound off ones hands and whether indeed I should wash those hands before I touch my caulk!

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Got Crack?

Do you have cracked plaster walls? Do those cracks annoy the hell out of you? Most people who see cracked walls think they have to replace the plaster with drywall if they want to rid themselves of the cracks. Well, you could, but it is a messy way to solve a problem. Then they remove all the lath behind the plaster and that creates a whole new set of problems when they find that the wall board won't lay flat on the old studs.
Here is the simplest way to get rid of hairline settling cracks in walls and ceilings. I didn't make this up either. I saw it on "Good Morning America" yonks ago. Back in the 90s.
People will pay $$$ for this secret. You can make $10,000 a day with my secret. In fact my uncles wifes second cousins brother whos father is a priest made $25,000 in his first week with my secret! (Sorry, it's late and the infomercials are starting to appear on the TV. I thought a blogfomercial was in order.)
I won't charge you $39.99. I won't charge you $29.99 or even $19.99 for this secret. I won't even ask for one thin dime. Why? Well people should pay for what advice is worth. Wouldn't you say that was fair? Since my advice isn't worth a damn thing, well, you get what you pay for I guess. So, what is this secret? Does it really work? Will it rid my walls of cracks forever and ever? Of course it will.
The solution? Painters caulk!

I've been messing around with my caulk all week. Sticking it in every single crack I can find. When I'm done, I wipe it down with a damp paper towel to remove the excess from the walls. See, the way it works is this. As the crack expands and contracts, so does my caulk. When it's hot, it expands. When it is cold, it shrinks. If you put a coat of latex paint over your caulk it will expand and contract too. Thus, when you are finished, the crack will be out of site and your caulk is protected.

So, in case you are curious, here I am holding my caulk!



Some of you have really dirty minds. I'll bet your parents told you that if you played with your caulk you would go blind, too...... Now where did I put my glasses?

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Match of the Day

Let's talk about window hardware. In this place, none of it matches! I don't have enough sets of matching sash locks or pulls to do a room. The windows all had missmatched hardware, some new and some quite old. The living room has three windows. The hardware did all match but two of the locks had broken parts. So, they don't match but do work.

Several months ago a neighbor threw out a pair of sashes, back in October I believe. I threatened to remove the sash lock since it was kind of cool looking. Well, on Friday I finally removed it since the windows were still in a heap on their side yard. It had rusted and wouldn't budge but a little oil took care of that.

I then looked through my cigar box of removed hardware and low and behold, I found one that matched it exactly. It was from the one and only window of two that are in what will be the dining room (which was in a bathroom when we bought the place) which actually opened. The other window had long since been re-muddled and downsized until I restored it and was fortunate to find a pair of sashes that fit the opening around the place.

Here is a picture of the lock which I have already cleaned and put a coat of shellac on. As you can see, it isn't your run of the mill, standard turn of the 20th century, simple sash lock which I actually have several since I tend to scrounge all the thrown out windows in my block.



He shoots! He scores!
What are the chances of that? Well, I guess they were better than winning the Powerball lottery of $365 million! Those odds were 1: 146 million.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Mission Accomplished!

Here is how the window sashes look now. They are all quite dark but the constant layering of tinted shellac has paid off. They are all dark like walnut and have that pale amber fine graining that is common in dark walnut. The two pictures are the same frame against some of the orange colored yellow pine molding in the residence house.






Todays work involved the light sanding of the shellac covered surfaces, then the application of three more coats of the dark tinted shellac left over from my floor. The first of the three coats was thinned down a little with denatured alcohol but the final two coats were not. The final coat could have been diluted with more shellac really so as not to be quite so dark but hey, I'm lazy! The whole process took another 3 hours. It would have been quicker if there weren't those six paned window frames to deal with. Now I just have to go and buy some more glazing putty so I can put all the glass back in these frames.

So, for all those people who whine about stripping their woodwork to find putty and dents. Then make some excuse about how they just have to paint it because there is nothing they can do about it..... don't come whining to me. Here is proof that you can make it look like old wood again!

I had no clue if this would work when I first tried it in our hallway (that's a lie, I had faith) but what I did know was that someone had done much of the original wood work in a similar manner to this because I noticed it as I stripped it off. There was definitely shellac over paint (probably to look like rosewood) so it seemed to me that it would be possible to do it here. I used walnut dye because that is what I have. You can get oak, mahogany and all sorts of colors if you want. Even blue and red! You really don't need more that 2 oz. of the stuff. I bought an 8oz can for around $25.00. I used 2 oz which was enough to do my dining room floor, the patterns and risers on the stairs and these windows. I probably still have some of the dye dissolved in alcohol sitting in a jar. I sent 2 oz. to Greg so he could use it on a piece of furniture but it was probably stolen by his hill-billy neighbors and free-based into a dark brown crystalline substance known on the streets, not as "crack" or "crank" but as "crap". Which leaves me with 4 oz. I won't need more than another 2 oz. of the stuff. Cincinatti Cape Cod didn't want any when I offered it. House in Progress didn't want any when I offered it to them. Hmmmm, anybody wanna buy some "crap"?


Thursday, February 16, 2006

Mission Impossible! Window repair 101 extended...

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to make four window sashes that are painted a shade of beige (the same color as our bedroom ceiling) look like wood. Preferably walnut.

"Heh! Piece of cake!"

Here are two of the windows. They are a pair with a six over one configuration when installed. The other pair are identical. These windows will be installed in the main dining room where we currently have no floor or door molding. The plan is to do that molding the same way.



Here are the tools and items I have to work with. A can of amber shellac, a jar with some aniline tinted amber shellac, some left over aniline tinted clear shellac from the dining room floor project last spring (not in the picture), some aniline dye in case I need it (but I shouldn't because I suspect that I have enough), a small brush that I use for shellac work and a large brush that I use for shellac work that has curved bristles because it sat in a jar of alcohol too long.



"Ummm, that sucks!"

I did a test on a wood paint stirrer to see if I could do it. Looks possible.



I applied a first coat of amber shellac to all the windows. By the time I got done the first window had dried. I applied a second coat of amber shellac with some aniline tinted clear shellac mixed in to make the windows darker. By the time I was done with the 4th window sash, the first one had dried. I thinned some of the dark tinted shellac from my floor project with some denatured alcohol and brushed that on being certain to make distinguishable brush marks. After 4 hours, all my windows looked like this. Can you see where we are going?



The next step is to let all this dry so that I can lightly sand the surfaces with 220 grit sand paper to remove any dust, bubbles, cat hairs, etc. I could have done that last night too except for one thing. I am working on these in the basement of my residence and the sand paper is sitting by the front door of the "Crackhouse" where I left it when i went to pick up the windows!

These will be done today! I'm waiting for the 4th coat to dry right now...

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Who'd a thunk it.....

You would think that with all these posts lately that I haven't done diddly-squat on the house. You would be WRONG! I have actually been striping paint from two window sashes and a door. I've tried, but there is no real way that I can make stripping paint from wood an interesting story. If you have never stripped paint before, try it! Then you will know what I mean...
Here is something that is a little more interesting. Remember this from a post I made back in December?



What is it did you ask? It is a genuine piece of American ingenuity and craftsmanship! A bonifide piece of Amercana. Folk painted of course. It is a sausage stuffer.

I did some research and found this. Just to prove that I know what I am talking about!



It wasn't even invented by a German! I saw one just like it in "The Brass Armadillo" for $60.00. I saw one on ebay sell for $13.99. Our delightful object d'art was $5.00 at an auction. Do you want to know the one thing that would make our sausage stuffer worth more? What could possibly make it worth at least twice what we paid for it? What could make it look like the other two?



Paint stripper!

Monday, February 13, 2006

Since I am in Dedication Mode....

I remember this song from when I was a teenager by "The Stranglers".
I thought I would post the lyrics here. Then I would pop the burning question...... (wait for it.....)

No More Heroes

Whatever happened to Leon Trotsky?
He got an ice pick
That made his ears burn
Whatever happened to dear old Lenny?
The great Elmyra and Sancho Panza?
Whatever happened to the heroes? (x2)

Whatever happened to all the heroes?
All the Shakespearoes?
They watched their Rome burn
Whatever happened to the heroes? (x2)
No more heroes anymore (x2)

Whatever happened to all the heroes?
All the Shakespearoes?
They watched their Rome burn
Whatever happened to the heroes?(x2)
No more heroes anymore (x2)

This song is dedicated to ALL THOSE HOUSEBLOGGERS who don't post much any more.

For some of you (and you know who you are) it has been almost a year. Put up a post and let us know what you've been up to. Your house is nowhere near done. We know that, because if it was you would have blogged about it by now.There are almost 200 houseblogs logged onto http://www.houseblogs.net/ these days. So my question is "Where did you all go?" Enquiring minds want to know.....

Saturday, February 11, 2006

We dedicate this post

To Home Improvement Ninja
Who is about to practice imperialism on a neighborhood scale.
Go and watch the "Four Feathers" and read this 1892 poem before you put on the khakis and pick up the Martini Henry rifle! The Sudanese are a formidable foe!

“Fuzzy-Wuzzy”
(Soudan Expeditionary Force)

Rudyard Kipling

WE’VE fought with many men acrost the seas,
An’ some of ’em was brave an’ some was not:
The Paythan an’ the Zulu an’ Burmese;
But the Fuzzy was the finest o’ the lot.
We never got a ha’porth’s change of ’im:
’E squatted in the scrub an’ ’ocked our ’orses,
’E cut our sentries up at Suakim,
An’ ’e played the cat an’ banjo with our forces.
So ’ere’s to you, Fuzzy-Wuzzy, at your ’ome in the Soudan;
You’re a pore benighted ’eathen but a first-class fightin’ man;
We gives you your certificate, an’ if you want it signed
We’ll come an’ ’ave a romp with you whenever you’re inclined.

We took our chanst among the Khyber ’ills,
The Boers knocked us silly at a mile,
The Burman give us Irriwaddy chills,
An’ a Zulu impi dished us up in style:
But all we ever got from such as they
Was pop to what the Fuzzy made us swaller;
We ’eld our bloomin’ own, the papers say,
But man for man the Fuzzy knocked us ’oller.
Then ’ere’s to you, Fuzzy-Wuzzy, an’ the missis and the kid;
Our orders was to break you, an’ of course we went an’ did.
We sloshed you with Martinis, an’ it wasn’t ’ardly fair;
But for all the odds agin’ you, Fuzzy-Wuz, you broke the square.

’E ’asn’t got no papers of ’is own,
’E ’asn’t got no medals nor rewards,
So we must certify the skill ’e’s shown
In usin’ of ’is long two-’anded swords:
When ’e’s ’oppin’ in an’ out among the bush
With ’is coffin-’eaded shield an’ shovel-spear,
An ’appy day with Fuzzy on the rush
Will last an ’ealthy Tommy for a year.
So ’ere’s to you, Fuzzy-Wuzzy, an’ your friends which are no more,
If we ’adn’t lost some messmates we would ’elp you to deplore;
But give an’ take’s the gospel, an’ we’ll call the bargain fair,
For if you ’ave lost more than us, you crumpled up the square!

’E rushes at the smoke when we let drive,
An’, before we know, ’e’s ’ackin’ at our ’ead;
’E’s all ’ot sand an’ ginger when alive,
An’ ’e’s generally shammin’ when ’e’s dead.
’E’s a daisy, ’e’s a ducky, ’e’s a lamb!
’E’s a injia-rubber idiot on the spree,
’E’s the on’y thing that doesn’t give a damn
For a Regiment o’ British Infantree!
So ’ere’s to you, Fuzzy-Wuzzy, at your ’ome in the Soudan;
You’re a pore benighted ’eathen but a first-class fightin’ man;
An’ ’ere’s to you, Fuzzy-Wuzzy, with your ’ayrick ’ead of ’air—
You big black boundin’ beggar—for you broke a British square!

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Coming to a House Near You!

This phenomena is not limited to the wonderful, magical city of Dayton I see. In fact it is everywhere. You can read about it in these newspaper articles.

Article #1

Article #2

Article #3

It has raised its ugly head in our neighborhood in the last few months and the bad news is that unless a home is occupied and the owner is willing to prosecute there is little that can be done to the scrap metal thieves. We have had most of the aluminum and iron removed by me stolen off of our property over the last few years. I never fussed because I was going to throw it out anyway. I only got a little pissed when the FREE iron clawfoot tub got stolen off the front porch (the feet to which were inside the house and have recently been donated to another houseblogger) and the covers to my cisterns were stolen.
Copper pipes are being removed and the water left running by some of these thieves, many of which have addictions to crack and crystal meth. The few dollars they make from stealing 20 lbs of aluminum siding doesn't equal the Thousands of $$$ in damage they do to a house or the immediate loss in property values by surrounding houses.

Makes you wish you could just pick up your house and move it to OBF (that's Outer Bum F*ck to the cultured among you or Outer Bum Phuck to the cultured and scientific among you) Pennsyltucky or some where like Crow Mountain, near Russelville, Arkansas.

Sorry John, I couldn't resist the plug. Since you actually did pick up a house and move it from OBF to Outer OBF Egypt.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Suspense! The Propaganda Machine is in Motion...

I got this press release in my email today. If you read my previous posts about the subject then you already know the facts. I find it funny that all of a sudden the city engineers DON'T have a design plan. It seems that they had one back in 2004 when they applied for the funds...

Sorry, I must not be bias and only present the facts.... this is going to be a fun meeting!

Public Meeting to Be Held on Intersection Modifications


Release Date: Wednesday, February 8, 2006
Contact: Keith Steeber, Division of Civil Engineering, 937-333-3840

On Thursday, February 23, there will be a public meeting regarding modifications to the intersections of Wayne Avenue and Stewart Street and Wayne and Wilmington Avenues. The meeting will begin at 6:00 p.m. at 10 Wilmington Place.

In March of 2005, the City of Dayton received a commitment for Federal Surface Transportation Program (STP) funding in the amount of $1,232,000 to be used for construction. The City Commission passed legislation in October of 2005 to make improvements to these intersections. Construction will not occur until 2009.

The purpose of this public meeting is to solicit input from citizens who live in the area as well as anyone who uses these intersections regularly. The public input session kicks off the design phase of this multi-year project. Everyone is encouraged to attend and voice their opinions to ensure the best possible functioning of these major intersections for the years to come.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Your Fly is Undone.....

Summer will soon be here. You will be opening your windows and even with all that screening some little pesky fly will get into the house. If the cats don't get them first there is always the modern wall art created when you use a fly swatter. The modern method of preference is bug spray. You get to see the little buggers smack into a window and writher as their nervous systems shut down. I've been known to use hair spray on them in the past. Nothing like a kamakazee fly with locked wings smacking into a wall or the floor!

So, what did people do in the past? Well, from the great big book of everything, the 1909 edition of "Household Hints and Discoveries" comes this.

Preventitives Against Flies

Flies are said to abhor sweet clover. Place in bags made of mosquito netting and hang them about the room.
Or sprinkle about the room oil of sassafras or oil of laurel. The latter has been used by the butchers of Geneva from time immemorial.
Or use oil of lavender or lavender buds.
Or soak houseleeks for five or six days in water, and wash pictures, furniture and woodwork with the decoction.
Or boil onions in a quantity of water and wash picture frames, moldings and delicate woodwork, using a soft cloth or a brush.
To prevent flies from settling on windows, wash them in water containing kerosene and wipe with a rag moistened in kerosene.

To Make Poisonous Fly Paper

To make poisonous flypaper dissolve 6 drams of chloride of cobalt and two ounces of brown sugar in one pint of boiling water. Saturate blotting paper with this solution and put a small square of the paper in a saucer of water, or use the solution itself but remember it is a deadly poison.
Or mix 1 teaspoon of laudanum and 1/2 teaspoon of brown sugar wit 2 tablespoons of water. Expose in saucers. Keep away from chidren and pets.
Or boil 1/2 ounce of quassia tips in 1 quart of water and add 8 ounces of molasses or brown sugar.
Or dissolve 2 drams of mastic of quassia in 1/2 pint water, and add 2 tablespoons of molasses or brown sugar.
Or make a strong green tea and sweeten with sugar.
Or mix 1/2 teaspoonful of black pepper and 1 teaspoonful of sugar with 2 tablespoonfuls of cream.
Or mix 1 tablespoonful of black pepper, 1 tablespoonful of molasses or brown sugar, and the yolk of 1 egg. Beat to a paste. Flies will eat freely any of the above if exposed where they congregate and will be killed by them.

To Make Sticky Fly Paper

Melt 1/2 pound of rosin and dilute to a consistancy of molasses with 4 ounces or more of sweet oil or lard oil. Spread this with a brush on two or more sheets of manilla wrapping paper, leaving an inch or more margin all around. Place the sticky surfaces of each pair of sheets together and when wanted, pull them apart. This is also a preventative against ants and other insects.

Friday, February 03, 2006

What I seem to do best....

In my "other life" and when I get a chance, I paint little people and things for people who collect or play games with their miniature people and things. There are grown men and women out there who play historical miniatures wargames and Dungeons and Dragons type role playing games. After Elizabeth arrived I have not been able to paint the volume that I used to. I would crank out thousands of these things a year. It will never make me rich but it is paying the heating bill this winter. Occassionally I find something to paint and keep. I painted this for the wife this week along with a bunch of other stuff for a customer.


It is cute. The actual miniature was sculpted by Tom Meier and is based on a picture done by Keith Parkinson which I have on a wall in the house.
To get a perspective on this. Here is a picture showing the actual size of this thing.


I used to be in retail management, then insurance sales and management and even worked with an auction company for a little over a year but this was what I did best. I have painted these things since I was 14 but only started painting for other people in 1994. The good thing is that being able to do this helps when it comes to paint and decorate the house. I can visualize things and know what to experiment with to get the end result that I want. I'm certainly no artist, or at least I have no art education but using washes, inks and varnishes comes easy to me. Working on the house is just doing the same thing on a larger scale. I really should buy some new brushes though. Painting the house with these "000" artist brushes takes forever!

Thursday, February 02, 2006

I'll go to hell for this....

A Catholic priest and a Protestant Bishop were having a discussion about how people have forgotten the true meaning of Easter. To test their theory they decided to walk up to total strangers in the street and ask them about the meaning of Easter.
They approached the first person and said "Sir, can you tell us what you know about Easter?"
The man replied "Easter? Isn't that when the kids dress up and go door to door and get candy?"

The religious duo looked at each other and shrugged their shoulders.
They approached a second person with the same question. The reply was "Easter? Ah yes, that is when the Easter Bunny leaves baskets of colored eggs and chocolate for the children. Isn't it something to do with rights of spring?"

Again the pair shrugged their shoulders and in their frustration decided to ask a third person, someone who at least looked educated. "Sir? Can you tell us the true meaning of Easter?" they asked.
"Easter? That is the most Holy of all religious holidays. That celebrates the resurrection of Christ. Jesus was crucified on Good Friday and his body placed in a cave and the entrance was covered by a rock. On Sunday the rock had moved and Jesus appeared. He saw his shadow and there were six more weeks of winter."

Ba da bing!

Happy Groundhog day!

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Suspense! My opinion... (and it is only that)

for what it is worth. I believe in capitalism and the right to make money from land deals. If the city wants to pay $1 million for the property they propose putting a road through and the owner takes it, well, good for him! If they want to buy land from 10 Wilmington Place and spend $100,000 moving the pergola structure at the apex AND the owners of the property agree to this then that is OK in my books too. I don't think they want to do that though. In fact, I don't think the planners have a plan at all. They submitted something to the State for funds with no real plan in place so they got the money with a bold LIE!
If nobody got wind to what they had done then they would have tried to acquire the brick house on the hill by imposing eminent domain. With this plan proposal they would have tried to buy it for fair market value which would be considerably less if it wasn't listed on the National Register. In fact, it would have had less value because of the proposal! Well, they won't be able to touch that house and they know it. Now they say that they will move the pergola structure back 20 feet at the apex of the Y but have no clue that this structure was put on the National Register with the main building in 1979. I have been trying to tell the city engineers this but they don't want to hear it from me. I have suggested in November that they have a public meeting NOW to find out what problems they will face so that they can re-allocate the funds to a truely worthwhile project in the city. So I set one up in December 2005 and they rebuffed "That is too soon. January would be good". So I set one up in January and they said that they "needed time to put a few proposals together". So I said screw it! Let them drag their feet and I will slap them with the details when it is too late to try to reclaim the funds for another project. I believe that this one is a complete waste of money and that any congestion can be fixed by re-calibrating the traffic lights and putting up a "No left turn between 3-6PM" sign or by closing off Stewart Street as has been suggested and removing the one set of lights. If they want to pay me $1.9 million for that advice then I would be happy to take it.
Then I got clever. I spoke with one of the city staff at our priority board and asked them to set up the meeting. See, now it looks like this enterprise has been initiated by the city. To my surprise, it worked AND they have agreed to have the meeting at..... wait for it... 10 Wilmington Place! The Heart of it all!
Widening Wayne Avenue and putting in a center turning lane from Anderson to this junction isn't a real problem. There are grass verges on both sides of the road that could be eliminated but the cost to move all the street lamps would be excessive. The problem arises when they try to widen the turn onto Wilmington Pike which is currently one lane coming out of the city widening to two lanes at Beckman Street..

What would I like to see happen? To be truthful, nothing. I think it is a waste of money.

If 10 Wilmington Place is agreeable then that would be my other option. They do have the land to give up but that pergola structure would be in the way and they would have to agree to move it. I am not opposed to the idea of improving this junction if the affected parties are agreeable to the plan. I will say that I don't approve of how this project acquired its funding though. I am of the opinion though that the city will proceed with this project whether or not it is necessary. They will proceed with it whether or not the general public opposes it. See, they need grants to stay in business. They can't make make enough money from taxes so they apply for every grant that they can get. Unfortunately many of the grants are designed to help low income families buy $160,000 homes in a city where homes sell for $40,000 to $90,000. Middle income families can't afford these homes for low income families and if they could, don't "qualify" to buy them. We have grants to help the homeless but no grants to help the people who pay city wage tax! The middle class has left the city. The city offers them nothing so they sell up and move and if you do decide to buy historical property and keep it they come up with a grant that gives them an excuse to knock it down to build a road that helps only people living outside the city.... see, they were willing to lie to get the money. I'll bet they are willing to lie to get to keep it.