Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on August 12th, 2011 at 3:37 pm
If you’re one of the over 1,200 or so people who ride on SE Ankeny every day, be extra careful when you get to SE 20th. Earlier today, city crews filled in the gaps that allow bikes to pass through the median island (see photo below). The City says it was just a mistake and they plan to clean it up as early as tomorrow morning.
I got several reports from readers concerned that people would be caught off guard when they try to ride through.
(Photo: Moira Ray)
Around 12:30 today someone posted this to the “damnportlanders” Livejournal:
“I Just watched a city truck drive up to the intersection at SE 20th and Ankeny. Two guys got out and them asphalted-in the two big gaps in that median divider, completely blocking them off and making that intersection far, far more dangerous to cross on a bike. Be warned.
I have no effing clue why they would have done this.”
Gabrielle R. wrote to me via email that, “Right now it’s really not safe for any skinny-tired bike to cross 20th there.”
I called Citybikes, a shop just west of the intersection. An employee there confirmed the situation. “I went outside and looked and thought, what hell are they doing?” she said, “It’s causing a lot of havoc.”
I also called PBOT to confirm what had happened. They say that this was just a mix-up. It’s likely related to work that will happen sometime next week in advance of Sunday Parkways Southeast. In preparation for that event, the City will place temporary asphalt on the median to turn the curbs into ramps for the large crowds. However, the gaps are supposed to stay open.
A source at PBOT told me a few minutes ago that, “It’s definitely coming out tomorrow morning.”
If you ride through SE 20th at Ankeny, be a bit extra careful. Hopefully it will be gone before the morning bike commute rush.
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