Our society has a plethora of issues. As someone who delivers part-time for a living, finding an address in today’s world can sometimes feel like searching for a needle in a haystack.
Let’s start with the single-family home. There was a time when simply having the address in one-inch numbers on the mail post at the curb would suffice. Most mail personnel work the same routes, and they know when addresses change from being two more than the prior number, to a six, 10, even a 20-plus count increase. In today’s world, we have a number of delivery services — UPS, FedEx, Amazon and the pizza delivery guy — constantly trying to find addresses.
Even more imperative, are the first responders who can waste precious moments trying to determine if the address where their services are needed is the location where they’re at. Sometimes finding the address on a house can be a game of hide-and-seek. Sometimes it’s above the garage. Sometimes it’s near the door. Sometimes it’s on the side of the house. Sometimes it’s on the banister.
Worst of all are the missing addresses where the people just don’t bother.
Then you have apartment buildings that make you wonder how their numbering system works. I recently delivered to an apartment complex where the four apartment doors were like in a half of a rectangle — a door to the south, a door to the north and two doors in the middle. The door to the south was number 2110. The door to the north was number 2112. So I’m wondering what number could the two doors in the middle possibly be? 2120 and 2122. I can’t even begin to comprehend that illogic!
My next biggest pet peeve are courtyard buildings that have multiple addresses, but there’s no indication at the front what addresses are covered. That’s frustrating when there are several in a row and you have no idea which one is which. I hate buildings that call themselves by names and then don’t bother to have their physical address on the building.
It’s time we have a federal law that standardizes addresses and placement, even requiring that addresses be visible in multiple locations on a building, based on its size. We need addresses that should be stenciled at the curb. Driveway entrances should have them painted as well. Bungalow houses, for example, should have the address within 1-3 feet of the front door. Houses with attached garages, it should be mandatory that the address appear above or on the garage door. Additional addresses need to be by the main entrance door. Garages that are unattached should have their addresses on them.
No matter the building, the numbers need to be reflective so that at night when a light is shined on them, they will be legible.
I hope one of our local congresspersons takes on this issue. One of my biggest fears is delivering early in the morning or late at night and having someone in the house think that I am a burglar and shoot because they didn’t know a delivery was coming.
That is especially true during the holiday season where gifts are sent.