20 September 2009

One Street. One Name. What's So Wrong With That?

It's been awhile since we had a good old fashioned rant about Orange County. The temp is about 100 degrees here and I'm feeling good and agitated.

So why not?

First let me say that there's something all of you in the northwest take for granted: your streets don't change names.

One street. One name. That's how it should be. That's how God wants it. It's natural. Normal.

It isn't until you move to the vanity plate capitol of the US where every cookie-cutter community wants to distinguish itself from the others that these name-changing streets are not only prevalent but tolerated!

People in Beaverton feel my pain. Is it Canyon Road? Hwy 8? The TV Hwy? WTF, right?

Now imagine if that kind of thing happened all over town...

Irvine Blvd Becomes Trabuco Road

A map of Lake Forest, CA where Trabuco turns into Irvine Blvd

But wait there's more!

Here's a road called Moulton Parkway changing its name to Irvine Center Drive. There's no good reason to change the name of this road and even less reason to change the name to "Irvine" something when there's already an Irvine-named road a few miles away.

Moulton Parkway becomes Irvine Center Drive

A map of Orange County, CA showing where Moulton turns into Irvine Center DriveWhoever planned Orange County had a two-year-old draw the maps. The roads twist and turn: changing from an east-west to north-south and then back again.

I guess in a planned community it's more important to design tasteful shopping plazas than make it easy for people to locate said tasteful shopping plaza.

Without google maps I'd never be able to go anywhere besides work and home. I would have made a wrong turn years ago and ended up either in Mexico or Arizona.

Here's the worst road of them all...

We have a road that changes its name three times as it passes from Mission Viejo to Aliso Viejo and into Laguna Woods. ARGH!

Oso Parkway becomes Pacific Park Drive

A map of Orange County, CA showing where Oso turns into Pacific Park
Pacific Park becomes Glenwood Drive

A map of South Orange County showing where Pacific Park turns into Greenwood

Oso / Pacific Park / Glenwood is a main thoroughfare. It's like if 33rd changed names* as it crossed from Alberta to Hollywood, then Hollywood to Laurelhurst.

* (too bad Cesear Chavez Blvd is taken)

The real kicker is: the damn thing used to be called "Oso" from beginning to end. As new communities sprung up, the "city" planners for each one wanted to unique-ify one of their main roads.

If they ever invent a machine that can send me back in time, I'm going to find those stupid planners and stop them (ala Terminator 2). Even Governator Schwarzenegger won't be able to stop me!


Anonymous said...

Moulton turns into Irvine Center Drive, this is true - but it also turns into Golden Lantern and Edinger.
But the worst offender starts in Huntington Beach. Slater into Segerstrom into Dyer into Barranca into Muirlands. 5x changes. I know this because I sell H_us_s

Anonymous said...

This drove me nuts when I was in Barcelona. Street names only lasted anywhere from 2 to 10 blocks. But, I dealt with it because hell I was in Barcelona and it is fucking old.