More Chairs

red chair Take a load off. Another “chair” has appeared; this one is red with a surface to the right where you can keep a beverage, and the remote.

Some random thoughts with on Blackstone Boulevard.

1) Just because it is legal for men to go shirtless does not mean it is acceptable in every case. Yes, it’s hot . . . we’re all hot.

2) To the urbane flâneur who litters the path with vanilla cigarillo wrappers, your douchiness can not be calibrated.

3) The speed limit on Blackstone Boulevard should be 35 miles/hour.

[Additional Note: We now know that ‘Stump Chair’ has a Facebook page, but it’s still very mysterious. BC]

other chair

Chair on Elmgrove stump too.


These are everywhere.

9 thoughts on “More Chairs”

  1. Walking on the Blackstone Blvd path while cars pass at 25mph or less, you can converse in a normal voice. Cars moving at 35-40mph make a lot more noise and induce enough adrenalin to spoil that Walk in the Park experience. Pay attention to your subconscious stress levels next time and see what I mean.

    Bicycling next to traffic moving at 20mph, you do not need a painted lane to feel safe. Bicycling next to 40mph traffic most people, rightly enough, feel scared painted bike lane or no.

    The recent restriping of Blackstone Blvd did not go far enough. What is now the southbound side should get a double yellow line and carry 2-way traffic. The other side should be a bicycle boulevard with vehicular access only to the houses, and no vehicles alongside Swan Point.

    HORRIBLY inefficient to stop for pedestrians, eh? The nerve of those peons. Slamming on the brakes from 40mph, then flooring it to zoom back up to speed – yeah, an inefficient spurt of extra exhaust. Coming to a stop from 20 mph and then gently resuming travel, so we can all live in a city where walking around is a pleasure and not a teeth-gritting ordeal – is what I would call highly evolved civilization.

  2. Alright, I’m going to go out on a limb nd lose come points here:

    “I have to wait for about 8-10 cars to pass before I can cross *at a zebra crossing* (where the law requires cars to stop).”

    I frequently walk, bike, and drive, often with a stroller. I did about four miles of stroller-walking along Hope Street, North Main, and the Boulevard yesterday alone.

    It’s HORRIBLY inefficient to stop cars so people can cross streets. It’s a waste of time, and it’s bad for the environment (it uses a LOT of gas compares to cruising). Considering how little traffic there is on the East Side, even at busy corners like Hope and Fourth, it’s simpler, easier, more environmentally sound, and more harmonious to wait for a gap to cross.

    Some places it makes sense for the cars to yield, others for pedestrians. The crosswalk next to the CIT on Brook St is a good example where cars should stop for pedestrians. I think that most crosswalks should indicate to drivers to ‘be careful and consistent here’, not ‘halt for pedestrians’.

  3. Awesome chairs, indeed.

    Since this blog is usually so interesting and sensible, I’m not sure why the 35mph provocation was necessary (insufficient ad hits? need to drive up counters?). Which arguments for the 25mph limit are you missing?

    – general safety
    – pedestrian safety
    – bicycle safety
    – child safety
    – old-person safety
    – traffic turning in
    – traffic turning out
    – urban mixed use
    – pedestrian crossing
    – dangerous bike lane (the torn-up south-bound side)

    or some combination of the above? Or the plain old fact that accidents below 25mph tend not to be fatal, while those above tend to be, which is why in general all urban areas have 25mph limits?

    Let me add that as someone who uses Blackstone extensively, virtually nobody, ever, respects the limit. It *is* a 35-45 zone right now. Even those people who Jessica finds are creating eight-car backups are often driving at least 28-30 (I know from measurement). And many of the handful truly driving 25 are people who would probably drive 25 anyway.

    It is also routinely the case that I have to wait for about 8-10 cars to pass before I can cross *at a zebra crossing* (where the law requires cars to stop). That 8-10 count (and I actually do count) doesn’t come from a 9th or 11th driver stopping: it comes from there finally being a gap. This is even when I’m standing at the crossing with a child: people simply do not stop. Some drivers make eye contact, slow down, then speed up again because (a) they’re already going too fast, and (b) the people behind them are, too. People can stop below 25mph. They can’t, easily, at 45mph. I wonder if you and Jessica always stop for pedestrians on Blackstone? If so please tell me when you’re coming so I can cross then. (-:

    Excessive traffic controls are indeed a problem. It is not Blackstone’s problem, because there is only moderate control in theory and virtually no control in practice. (There was a brief moment last summer when the cops ticketed speeders. They’re long gone, and speeds are right back up.)

    As for Jessica’s assertion that “anywhere other than here” this would be a 45mph street: produce evidence. Show us some *single-lane* roads in a *dense urban area* that have 45mph speed limits. With Google StreetView, you can even show us the speed limit sign.

    Btw, over that distance, the net time you can save per 10mph bump is just about a minute. So your argument boils down to that one minute (in theory, only, given that people are already taking advantage of the lack of enforcement) being more valuable than all the downsides it produces to the quality of life in one of the very best spots in Providence.

    Let’s get Daily Dose back to its awesome content.

  4. Seriously? The speed limit should be faster because of driver impatience? Metro RI is congested but our commute times are far lower than Boston and New York. Suck it up chooch. And FYI, hit a pedestrian at 35 mph and you’ll probably kill them. Hit one at 20 and you probably won’t… hence the “20s plenty” campaign in Britain.

  5. There also two “chairs” on Hope Street, just north of Doyle. One is in front of the Providence Center (corner of Hope and Cypress) the other is in front of the turquoise house on the corner of Hope and Observatory Ave.

  6. The 25 mph limit drives me absolutely crazy every morning when I’m going to work. Some mornings I encounter sedans or trucks puttering along barely grazing the 25mph limit creating a line of tailgating cars behind them 8+ cars deep. It is painfully slow for such a wide street with few hazards to slow down for. This would be a 45mph street if it were anywhere other than here. I’m not sure which is more frustrating to drive down, Blackstone with its speed limit and snail-paced drivers, or Hope Street with its horrific road condition.

    On a positive note: Love the chair! I’ve always thought of that stump as one.

  7. I know it’s 25. I WANT it to be 35. 25 worked when it was two-lanes and a person in a hurry could pass. There are no children and dogs darting in and out and visibility is good. It’s a main thoroughfare, and at rush hour the single lane creates a solid stream of cars with no breaks for cross-traffic. The slowpokes create frustration, and people pass on the right or zip off to use Slater Avenue where they can blow straight through all 4-way stop signs. I believe excessive traffic control measures make us less safe.

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