Writing this column -- now borrowing a phrase from the football world -- ain't no scientific rocket. Readers ask questions, we find answers from reliable sources, yada, yada.
This particular column, on the other hand, is now in its third iteration. Shouldn't be a surprise, since it's about the long-running project to rebuild, improve and modernize the clog of traffic known as the intersection of Arkansas 10/Cantrell Road and Interstate 430.
Here at the traffic desk last week we were advised that driving west on Cantrell and then turning onto Rodney Parham Road and/or River Mountain Drive was a fire drill, and was giving drivers the opportunity to miss a sign, miss a turn and wind up in Fort Smith. Nothing against Fort Smith, but it's a bit out of the way for folks who want to access Rodney Parham Road.
The first writing was about this confusion and a response from the Arkansas Department of Transportation. The second writing was a revise, correction and further explanation from ArDot. At which point we decided to do what a wise editor told us to do years ago. That is, go out and have a look yourself.
Which we did. We imposed on the Fabulous Babe to drive us across the I-430 bridge then back and forth across the carnival ride that now passes over Rodney Parham and River Mountain Drive. While she was driving, we were navigating, cogitating and, our speciality, bloviating.
In any event, we found plenty of signage that directed us in, um, the right directions. And we are now optimistic that drivers can get to the right place by exercising due diligence.
Pessimism? We note a sign that tells the public this project will be done in June 2023.
Dear Mahatma: When will the new lanes be open on the rebuilt Interstate 430 bridge? Who will pick up all the trash I see in those new emergency/travel lanes? Why do you use a 7-iron rather than a pitching wedge for most of your approach shots? -- Fellow Golfer
Dear Fellow: Thank you for the series of probing questions posed between the first and sixth holes. Please note that I parred the latter.
We posed your first question to the Arkansas Department of Transportation. Turns out the work on the new lanes is complete. Now the wait is on for equipment for the electronic signs above the lanes. That equipment is in shipping.
Expectation is the materials should arrive, be installed and the lanes open by Thanksgiving.
As for the trash, it's ArDot's responsibility to clean up the mess drivers leave behind.
About club choice. We tend to pop up the wedge. Kind of like Phil Mickelson's flop shot, but not on purpose. It's not which club you use, anyway, but how you use it.
Vanity plate on an SUV: 7KIDS. May we translate? Massive feeding. Massive washing. Massive homework. Massive love.