June 15, 2005 The controversial No Right Turn signs at the intersection of Altona and Veterans Drive got the sack Wednesday morning — literally.
The signs — which have invoked the ire of the Frenchtown community by forcing drivers to take what many consider an onerous detour — are now covered in black plastic bags.
Strenuous efforts by two Frenchtown community groups the Committee for the Betterment of Carenage (CBC) and the Frenchtown Civic Organization (FTCO) have been rewarded this week with a temporary reprieve by Police Commissioner Elton Lewis.
Police spokesman Sgt. Thomas Hannah confirmed Wednesday that Lewis has temporarily suspended enforcement of the No Right Turn signs until June 22, when a 2 p.m. meeting is scheduled to try and resolve the situation.
Both CBC President Jean Greaux and FTCO President Henry Richardson have been contacted by the commissioner's office to attend the June 22 meeting.
In a statement Wednesday, Greaux thanked acting Gov. Vargrave Richards for acting expeditiously in contacting Lewis about the problem. Greaux had contacted Richards by letter earlier in the day.
Lewis' decision was good news for many in the community, given that hundreds of celebrants are expected to crowd into Frenchtown this weekend for the CBC's annual Father's Day celebration.
The offending signs had previously prevented eastbound travelers from making the convenient turn into Frenchtown, forcing all traffic to either the intersection at the Arturo Wattlington Post Office, or across the street to the Quality Foods lot in order to turn around and drive back to make a left turn into Altona. (See "Battle Over Frenchtown Traffic Sign Heating Up".)
The signs were erected on June 3 at the order of acting Public Works Commissioner George Phillips. Last week Phillips told the Source that the signs "would not come down."
He has not returned repeated calls from the Source requesting comment.
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