To cross Cheyenne Creek at Evans Avenue in Cheyenne Cañon, crews grabbed 16 old steel railroad rails — narrow gauge — framed them with wood, poured concrete and collected rock to fashion railings.
Given the small volume of traffic in Cheyenne Cañon then, it was plenty sturdy.
Today, it is rated “structurally deficient.” The worst bridge in Colorado Springs.
Eighth-worst in Colorado. Unsafe for garbage trucks or fire trucks to cross.
You might think replacing it would be a no-brainer.
You’d be wrong.
The tiny 30-by-20 foot span is the focus of a big snit on Pine Grove Avenue, home of the famous Starr Kempf wind sculptures.
Folks there are fired up, convinced the city is conspiring to use $840,000 in federal bridge-replacement money to dramatically change their quiet, wooded little neighborhood.
Neighbor Ellen Casey has rallied neighbors to fight suggestions by the city that, as part of the bridge project, it’s time to consider realigning the confusing entrance to the North Cheyenne Cañon Park and parking for the Starsmore Discovery Center. Here’s a view from FlashEarth.com.
The neighbors’ reaction shocked Dan Krueger, senior civil engineer overseeing the bridge project. He said it simply makes sense to examine other issues at the Evans Avenue/Cheyenne Boulevard intersection besides just the bridge.
Folks driving west often are confused by the three-way intersection of Evans, North Cheyenne Cañon and South Cheyenne Cañon roads. School buses and trucks often veer right up the north road and get stuck trying to turn around, the city told Pine Grove residents.
Another issue is the parking lots for Starsmore. School kids must cross the busy south road to reach the center.
So he created 10 options. One option is to do nothing. The second is to strictly replace the existing bridge. The next 8 are more elaborate. See what you think.
This is a more radical realignment. It curves Evans into the park over a new bridge, preserving the old for pedestrians. It also swaps the parking lot and the road so visitors to Starsmore don’t have to cross lanes of traffic.
Let me know what you think about these options.