DENVER (KDVR) – There have been constant issues for residents on 13th and 14th Avenues and now city leaders are speaking up.
District 5’s Amanda Sawyer blames the structure of the road for a lot of these crashes.
In Denver’s strong-mayor form of government her role is limited, but she said she’s been pushing Denver Department of Transportation and Infrastructure for answers and nothing is happening.
“This is a significant problem that’s getting significantly worse,” she said.
The latest crash earlier this month, stemmed from someone going through a stop sign.
“There is a level of responsibility from our residents and visitors to our city that are not being maintained on this road,” Sawyer said. “But at the end of the day, what that means is that the structure of the road … The way the road is built is wrong.”
The Problem Solvers have been emailing and speaking with DOTI about the issue since last summer.
It mentioned that speeds signs have been added and traffic light timing has been changed. DOTI also said that additional work is planned for this year, like adding posts to shorten pedestrian crossings and reconfiguring bike lanes, but these measures aren’t for the problem intersections the Problem Solvers have focused on.
“I don’t understand why they prioritized the locations they did because the locations they prioritized are not the locations that we see from police data the accidents are occurring,” Sawyer said.
That data shows DPD traffic calls for service on 13th and 14th from Colorado to Yosemite has had an over 50 percent uptick in the last four years,
In 2019, there were 162 calls, and last year, there were 247 calls.
“The data is showing that the problem is getting worse and it’s showing that the locations that DOTI has identified to implement those traffic calming measures are not the right locations, Sawyer said.
Sawyer claims there could be short term traffic calming solutions, but DOTI hasn’t utilized that resource.
“They have what are called on-call contracts, which drive me crazy,” Sawyer explained. “It means that the City Council approves a bucket of money over a period of time for a specific purpose. So, DOTI has on-call contractors, and there is money available, so they could go build them through an on-call contract tomorrow and they have chosen not to.”
Sawyer is working with DOTI now to set a date next month for a community meeting to facilitate a conversation between DOTI and the concerned residents.
The meeting will be online because they don’t believe there’s a building big enough in the district to hold everyone who would attend.