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I'm a taxi cab driver, and I spend a lot of time driving around, thinking Why, oh why, oh why is there a Ninth Street in Poway -- but no First, Second, Third, etc? Could I be mispronouncing this road, and it's really named after Joe Ninth?

-- Larry Rotolo, on the road

Hi, philosopher-cabbie Larry. We'll flag you down and give you the full story-- with the moral first: The best laid plans of mice and developers oft run into big problems with the planning department. (Hey, relax, Larry. Grandma can load the luggage.)

Many decades ago, before Poway was Poway, a developer made plans for a tidy community along Pomerado Road, between (present) Ted Williams Parkway and Poway Road. Since he was a builder, not a poet, he named his east-west streets First, Second, Third, etc. He took his plans to the county, and by the time they were through nitpicking the scheme, Ninth Street was the only one left on the map. And there it sits today, just one block long and adrift in an otherwise numberless void. (The City of Poway won't let developers name streets drab stuff like First or Second, A or B.) According to Poway's planning department, Fifth and Sixth streets would have been located where Meadowbrook Middle School is today. Less clear is why the builder didn�t change Ninth Street's name since, after the county's edit, it served no ordinal purpose. Oversight? A rebuke to the bureaucrats? (You can drop us off over there, Larry, between the Dumpster and the crime-scene tape. Grandma's got the luggage. The elves will handle the tip.)

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