I confess that until the recent city council discussion about it, the Monona sail site at the southern end of Monona Drive was something that never came to mind when I would think about Monona.

For one thing, I rarely enter or exit Monona from the Monona Drive ramp.

And when I do, I’m too busy focusing on merging or changing lanes and can’t see the sail and sign.

It’s always seemed to me that the sail site is meant to serve as branding for those that whiz past it on the Beltline. They are the only ones who can get a good (albeit fleeting) look at it.

For that reason, and also because there isn’t a public park near it, it doesn’t seem practical to add gardens and other bells and whistles that no one will see. I’m OK with everything else, such as the new sign, as long as it doesn’t cost $300K.

The only Monona sign that ever stands out to me is the one near the intersection of Broadway and Monona Drive that lists upcoming events and such. I don’t know what the plans are for it after the road construction is finished, but I find it useful and it’s better than the standard green population sign.

All my other entry points into Monona (South Towne exit, Pflaum/Nichols, Monona Drive from the Cottage Grove Road area) don’t have a noticeable transition from Madison to Monona. Monona doesn’t start to “feel” like Monona to me until I’m on Winnequah Road or Nichols.

I guess the bottom line is that no matter how much or how little money is spent on updating the sail site, Monona is the type of community where its branding ultimately comes more from the experience of Monona and its people, and not from architecture or sail sites.

Filed under: Anita's PostsMononaMonona Drive

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