When chip and seal becomes a safety issue
Last week the city of Glenwood Springs, in all its wisdom, laid down a new layer of chip and seal in Glenwood Park that consisted of 4 inches of loose gravel sitting on top of some bad glue-like tar.
Aside from the dust cloud that could choke a horse, which was diminished only by smoke from a nearby fire, the loose gravel made travel a real hazard. Rocks or chips are being thrown about like a barrage of bullets. Paint chips in cars are imminent. I watched a 12-year-old child totally bite it the other day on his bicycle. It has made motorcycling downright dangerous.
I called the city and they sent out a street-sweeping crew who then picked up most of the excess chip. This process took a little while due to the fact that they had to empty the street sweeper after every pass. I laughed with the guy running the machine about how silly this was.
Two days later the city laid this same mess down on Midland Avenue by the Sunlight bridge and made that as bad as a rutted-up jeep trail.
Once again I called to complain. Not just for me, but now the umpteen dozen people I have talked to. My complaints – once again safety related; it is after all national safety month – were heard by a machine.
The response came Saturday morning at 7 a.m. from a city employee with an attitude telling me he didn’t care who at the city told me he was head of streets, that wasn’t his department and call someone else.
So I called the Mayor. He copped an attitude with me told me since I wasn’t an engineer I didn’t know what I was talking about and that he was an advocate of chip and seal, and that he would make note of our complaints. He did not have any replies when I asked him why the kids in the neighborhood could no longer play basketball or roller-blade, or bicycle on their own street even after the waste excess was picked up.
I guess since our mayor is not elected by the people, he really doesn’t care about what they say or think.
If money is the only issue between chip and seal and paved, then I want to know who’s getting rich on this. I don’t like the idea of putting a price tag on safety. Our kids are worth more than that. Maybe it’s time we took back our government as a community rather than just deal with it and drive on dirt roads.
Owner, Mountain Tropicals LLC
Bartender, Glenwood Canyon Brewpub
Ski Patroller, Sunlight Mountain Resort
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