The four-way stops on El Paseo are goddamn terrifying

(Google Maps)

If there is a hell, it is just a bunch of four-way stops on El Paseo that those who didn’t get their admission to enter the Pearly Gates have to try to negotiate for eternity.

Most of El Paseo, America’s snooziest shopping district despite the exciting addition of balloon, is set up with stoplights – which are normally a thing that most of us hate, if only for the fact that we are stuck with a red arrow to turn left for what seems like hours with not an oncoming vehicle in sight. But, on El Paseo, thank God for these stoplights, because the three four-way stop intersections between Highway 74 and San Pablo are freakin’ awful.

If you happen to drive this stretch, anytime other than between 2 am and 7 am, here’s the one thing you will never, ever see:

  • All drivers come to a stop, follow the rules of the road, allow pedestrians to cross, wait their turn, go.

Nope.  Never happened.  Never will.  Instead you get drivers stopping and going without even realizing there is four-way traffic and people trying to cross the road, pedestrians roaming around and not paying any attention like it’s the time before cars or something, and, well, let’s just say it’s flippin’ chaos – making what you thought would be a nice trip to CPK or the Daily Grill awful.

Oh, and don’t bother trying to honk or anything.  For some reason, people who drive cars with Washington or Canadian plates don’t seem to be able to hear anything.  I guess they make cars differently up there?

Of course the ideal way to fix this would be to make these intersections roundabouts but, as we have seen in the Coachella Valley, drivers have an even harder time figuring those out.

So, I guess that means that, eventually, these three intersections will join the rest of El Paseo and get stoplights to stop the insanity.  And I can’t believe I am saying this, I won’t even be mad at it.