Blasting Bureaucratic Bungling

For the first full day since San Diego road crews etched “North Park” into two traffic circles located in University Heights, the correct community name is displayed. I asked “Who Authorized This?” on Oct. 1, 2020, regarding the, ah, mishap at Alabama and Louisiana streets along Meade Ave. The city constructed the roundabouts as part of the Mid-City Bikeways project.

Restoration at Alabama started before Christmas 2021 but was repeatedly delayed by rainstorms. Work there completed last week and at Louisiana yesterday. The process was arduous and messy—and not just from the actual physical disruption; clutter and confusion replace the previous clean etching of letters and design. As such, I wonder if all the money and industry invested to correct the misnaming was wasted.

The contractors sandblasted away each of the previous letters, then attempted to make some sort of design elements out of what remained. They then etched new letters into the unadulterated stone panels that had created visible eye space. Take a close look at the Featured Image, where between the stencils for “S” and “I” you still see remnants of “A”. I used Leica Q2 Monochrom for the photo and companions. Vitals, aperture manually set for all and each composed as shot: f/5.6, ISO 200, 1/640 sec, 28mm; 10:28 a.m. PST, Jan. 8, 2022.

The second shot shows the Alabama-Meade worksite on January 3. Vitals: f/8, ISO 200, 1/800 sec, 28mm; 12:41 p.m.

Two days later, debris rises from the sandblasting. Vitals: f/8, ISO 200, 1/1000 sec, 28mm; 1:59 p.m.

Returning to January 8, new letters interspace sandblasted panels that once spelled North Park. Vitals: f/5.6, ISO 200, 1/1000 sec, 28mm; 10:22 p.m.

Vitals for the last, of stencils, is same as the previous photo, except two minutes later.

Wrapping up, while the title could be me lambasting the snafu, it specifically refers to sandblasting away the error. First syllable is removed because I like to alliterate.