Monday, February 15, 2010

Walking uptown? Good luck

Without question downtown Charlotte is the most pedestrian-friendly neighborhood in town. But there are still some, ahem, issues. I spotted a few during a Sunday afternoon walk through downtown.

For instance, although the city code says property owners are supposed to keep the sidewalks in front of their property free of obstruction, on Sunday afternoon some spots that were in the shade were still filled with slushy ice, such as the spot in front of the restaurant Press on West Trade Street. No, it isn't fair that some people get the sun to do the work for them. Life isn't fair. Clear your sidewalks, please.


Unfortunately, the city doesn't do what many Northern cities do - you get a certain number of hours to clear your sidewalks of snow and then you're cited (in theory, at least). In recent snowy weekends I've noticed that hardly anyone seems to feel it's important to shovel the sidewalk in front of their home - not just uptown either. The result is dangerous ice and slush, and pedestrians having yet more difficulties getting around.


Charlotte has no staff or policies about enforcing the few ordinances it does have, such as keeping sidewalks clear of obstructions. A large pile of leaves was composting in the sidewalk in front of the County Services Center annex building on North College Street. (And since 2001 I've been watching some leaves actually turn into compostable soil on a sidewalk on Runnymede between Alexander Graham Middle School and Sharon Road. In addition, I noticed in fall 2008 that a section of sidewalk on Sharon Road, on the back end of a very exclusive and expensive property, was ankle deep in leaves - as though the property owner had no idea it was his/her responsibility to keep it clear.)


And finally, here's something you don't want to stumble over on a dark night uptown. Come on, guys, just get a hacksaw out and cut that one all the way to the pavement. It's on Fourth Street, just a few feet uphill from College.






13 comments:

Stephen said...

feel like whining about anything else?

Anonymous said...

I get the feeling Mary won't be showing her face inside Press (or any other of Pierre Bader's establishments -- Pie Town, Sonoma, and Aria) any time soon.

oneofestelles said...

And how about the the large patches of ice outside the Public Library on Sunday afternoon? When I left I took the long way around the block back to my car so I wouldn't be sliding.

consultant said...

That last picture is interesting. Take a good look at it. It's our future.

Take a trip to your local junk yard. Never been to one? Don't worry, a junk yard is coming to your neighborhood soon, especially if you live in the suburbs.

Peak oil is going to dismantle the rationale for long commutes and dispersed resources. Couple that with our collapsed economy and you've got a lot of abandoned homes ripe for stripping.

Drive around. You can see a lot of these homes now. Some have unfinished this or that, broken windows, doors hanging off, rent signs out front that stay up for months at a time, etc.

What we use to call a "bad neighborhood" or patches of blight, is going to happen all over our communities.

オテモヤン said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
consultant said...

FYI:

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/02/10/slumburbia/?ex=1281416400&en=beef5f2281325bf7&ei=5087&WT.mc_id=OP-D-I-NYT-MOD-MOD-M136-ROS-0210-HDR&WT.mc_ev=click

consultant said...

FYI:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/16/opinion/16herbert.html?th&emc=th

John said...

That doesn't even qualify as snow. I can still see the sidewalk. Silly south.

J said...

But we must remember, pedestrians are not humans. They are organisms that must be removed along with mosquitoes and slugs. You must be driving a car to be recognized as a human.

Anonymous said...

And where does the almighty consultant live?

Anonymous said...

Tidy Town.

Helen Bushnell said...

The recent snow storm was a big problem partly because it snowed a lot in places that are not used to snow.

And I agree. Businesses that do not take care of their sidewalks drive me crazy. I can understand individual homeowners not being able to shovel snow, but businesses have employees. One of them should be able to shovel snow or leaves or whatever.

Anonymous said...

"Drive around. You can see a lot of these homes now. Some have unfinished this or that, broken windows, doors hanging off, rent signs out front that stay up for months at a time, etc. "

You can see the same thing in the inner core of many major cities, not just the burbs.