Things to Fix Before the DNC: Lights That Go Out on the Interstate

Each month leading up to next September’s Democratic National Convention, writer Jeremy Markovich profiles one aspect of Charlotte that needs fixing up.
Chris Edwards

Every so often, an enterprising reporter drives down the highway and notices not just one street light out, but multiple lights. In a row. Whoa, that’s got to be a story, they say. The first report came years ago. A local TV station got a tip. It launched an investigation. Using high-tech equipment (eyes, car), it breathlessly uncovered malfunctioning lights, then relentlessly questioned middle managers at the NCDOT until, dammit, every last light on I-277 was again shining in the night, illuminating a jeopardous asphalt gauntlet with glorious safety beacons. It only took five and a half years.

You thought this was over? You thought wrong, shady. Highway lights are out again, and the police blame copper thieves. A note to said thieves: you’re not just stealing metal wiring; you’re plundering poor Thomas Edison’s soul.

Can It Be Fixed? Yes, if you call 311. Or turn on your headlights.


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