What determines the correct spelling of a street name? My street has two signs, and each has a different spelling. The phone book also reflects two different spellings. What source do I reference to know the legal spelling of my street?

What determines the correct spelling of a street name? My street has two signs, and each has a different spelling. The phone book also reflects two different spellings. What source do I reference to know the legal spelling of my street?

— Lisa C., via e-mail

Medford's expert on all things relating to city streets is no stranger to your problem, Lisa. Cory Crebbin, the city's director of public works, thinks he even knows where you live.

"You can probably assume they're talking about Keene Way," Crebbin says, adding that this stretch — alternately identified as Keene Way, Keene Drive and Keene Way Drive — is Medford's most infamous example of inconsistency.

Much as public works employees would like to clear up confusion, they print street signs according to the legal plat on file with the Jackson County clerk's and surveyor's offices. Those documents are the authority for your street's proper spelling.

Officials in city and county offices try to clarify street names and their spelling to assist efforts of public-safety agencies. But some odd ones do slip through.

Blame developers, who choose the names for new streets and may not be the strongest spellers. Maybe that's how we ended up with Poppie Circle.