DENVER — Pedestrians and drivers across the Denver metro area are getting frustrated with the effect the construction boom is having on many intersections.
The growing pains are especially obvious along 19th Avenue and Grant Street east of the downtown area, where a private construction project is taking place.
Many pedestrians are left without a sidewalk and must travel out of the way to get to their destinations.
Construction companies must adhere to a traffic safety plan, which is strictly enforced. Blocking sidewalks is a necessary safety measure.
Drivers soon will enjoy two-way traffic along that portion of 19th Avenue as part of the city’s improvement plan, which will also shorten the crossing distance for pedestrians.
The project is moving along. The south side of Grant Street is open.
City officials said that weather permitting, pedestrians will be able to use the northeast corner of 19th Avenue and Grant Street by the end of next week.
With several construction projects in progress at the same time in and around the downtown area, the importance of safety is paramount.
“Ideally, there is no, or very limited, impact on sidewalks during construction and we issue permits in such a manner that incentivizes contractors to maintain passable sidewalks adjacent to construction, whenever possible,” the city said in a statement.
“However, there are occasions where this is not possible for safety reasons. Sometimes space is so constrained that it is safer to close the walkway and ask pedestrians to use the sidewalk on the other side of the street, as opposed to having them walk in the street.
“Public safety is the primary focus when we are considering requests to close sidewalks and drives our permitting process.”
Any pedestrian with questions or comments about safety issues can contact the city.