Cartoon Tuesday: Chutes and Ladders, State DOT Style


Via Steven Higashide at Mobilizing the Region:

A board game? An unusually colorful circuit board? Could it be
contemporary art? Perhaps the four sets of people represent humanity,
dwarfed by the boxes and arrows which symbolize the harrowing
complexity of modern life.

Actually, this is a real diagram from the NYSDOT Division of
Engineering’s Project Design Manual which was reprinted in the Final
Environmental Impact Statement for the Rt. 347 widening project. Apparently it was put there to explain the project development process in a nutshell. A convoluted, bewildering nutshell. (MTR’s intuition is that the diagram is intended as a reference guide for engineers, not the general public.)

Government agencies are often criticized for being opaque to the
public, and this is not the way to help. Other DOTs have explained
their processes in much simpler ways.

To read the fine print on the diagram, check out the original image on NYSDOT’s website (it’s big).