Backup in parking lot

The problem A traffic signal in Waverly is too brief to let farmers' market patrons leave a clogged parking lot.

The backstory Lorraine Tunis Doo had plenty of time to notice the problem. She and her sister-in-law sat in traffic more than 15 minutes trying to leave the parking lot of the Waverly Farmers' Market.

The market is held Saturday mornings in a municipal parking lot, and drivers exit on Barclay Street, near a complicated intersection where 33rd Street, University Parkway, Merryman Lane and Barclay meet.

Doo wrote in an e-mail that the green light was 10 seconds, only long enough to allow one car through at a time, which "astonished" her. By comparison, the light on 33rd Street was 90 seconds, Doo wrote.

Watchdog contacted a market official who confirmed that the light had been causing traffic to back up.

"People were starting to complain to us," said Marc Vey, president of the market's board of directors.

Watchdog confirmed that the light was indeed short on Barclay Street - 12 seconds from green to red - but that seemed sufficient for the amount of traffic using that thoroughfare six days of the week.

"It may just be an issue on Saturday, and I don't know if they can make the lights different on a different day," Doo said in an interview.

Adrienne Barnes, a spokeswoman for the city's Department of Transportation, said a fix is already in the works. By the end of November, transportation personnel will install "puck detectors" that will sense the presence of vehicles.

"As soon as traffic approaches ... it tells the light to change," she said. And the light will stay green long enough to accommodate the waiting cars.

Update No, we mean it this time. The new Curran memorial clock tower in Govans has had all the necessary fixes required to maintain the correct time on its face - for good.

Two weeks ago, Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. personnel activated an electric meter, and staff from the city's Department of Transportation made the final connections. Now the clock tower - a replacement for the one damaged by lightning shortly after it was installed in the 1970s - should show the correct time.

The new clock boasts features such as a carillon that will play patriotic tunes this week in honor of Election Day and holiday music later this winter.

It will even change automatically today to reflect the end of daylight saving time, said Laura Thul Penza, president of the Govanstowne Business Association. And, in the event of a power failure, the system will reboot - no manual adjustments necessary.

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