Call it "The case of the awkwardly aimed arrows."
Traffic engineers from the City of San Diego recently re-striped the western terminus of Chatsworth Boulevard at the traffic light where it intersects with Catalina Boulevard. Added was a second lane for vehicles making left turns from westbound Chatsworth to southbound Catalina.
But when these two lanes of vehicles enter Catalina, there is reduced width and a short distance to deal with as the intersection of Point Loma Avenue looms quickly.
Engineers solved this issue by creating a very quick and short merge stretch so that vehicles are forced down to a single lane in the short space approaching Point Loma Avenue where there is another traffic signal and left turn lane for vehicles to turn eastbound.
Two large arrows were painted on the surface of Catalina directing motorists to quickly merge back into one lane. But there is one small problem with the arrows:
They are painted to direct vehicles into the lane that ends...not the lane that continues south on Catalina, perplexing pointers that have added confusion instead of clarity.
Confused motorists are hesitating after making the left turn, some slowing nearly to a stop and others accelerating rapidly as they jockey for position on their journey towards their destinations further out the Point.
Several nearby residents are so fed up with the confusing arrows they have bragged on social media about their determination to remove the first one by picking at the painted pavement. Much of this arrow is now gone. But the second arrow remains in pristine condition as motorist after motorist makes a routine left turn only to be confronted by the perplexing pattern.
The intersection is used by thousands of vehicles daily who commute to work at the federal facilities at the south end of Catalina or visit Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery and the famed Cabrillo National Monument.