Jan 18, 2012 7:15 PM by David Ortiviz

Street superintendent responds to new complaints on Northern

A few weeks ago we captured incredible video of cars slipping and crashing on Northern Ave, which was icy and snow-packed. Many people were angry and blamed city street plows for not doing their job. Now there's a new issue. Pueblo's streets superintendent is responding to complaints about conditions on Northern Avenue.

"I've never seen so many people that were so upset about the condition of Northern," said Paul Kendall, owner of Rocky Mountain Sports and Collectibles on Northern Ave. "You know it was such a mess out there," he added.

Now, Kendall says there's a different kind of mess. "The dust, the dirt and the sand," he added.

The city dumped sand on the road to give drivers traction. A few weeks later the road's been cleaned, but the sand is mixed in with ice along curbs and scattered across these sidewalks. There's also broken glass and other evidence of those previous accidents. "It isn't appealing," said Kendall. "It don't make the south side look good," he added.

"We've chosen not to remove all of the ice all the way to the curb, what little is remaining today doesn't really impede traffic," said Steve Eubanks, Streets Superintendent for the City of Pueblo.

Eubanks says the remaining ice against curbs isn't a safety hazard. Eventually it will melt and crews will sweep the sand. As far as the sidewalks, Eubanks says that should be removed by the property owner. "It's their responsibility to keep the sidewalks clear." said Eubanks.

The city, by the way, owns the cemetery adjacent to these sandy sidewalks on Northern. Eubanks says the City Parks Department is responsible for it.

But back to that icy mess last month--the city blames not having the right tools. "I know our trucks were out there many times, we were out there five or six times. The thing that would have helped us a great deal was some additional melting agents," said Eubanks. He says more powerful de-icing chemicals were slashed from the budget a few years ago because they were too expensive. "But it is something we're talking about, at least putting it back in our tool box."

The streets division has cleared the sand and ice near gutters to avoid potential flooding. Eubanks says they hope to have the remaining sand cleaned up in about a week.



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