Main Street aesthetics out of sync
For the past six months, the Commercial Core and Lodging Commission have worked toward replacing the “blight” known as our newspaper-rack boxes. I am happy to report progress. Money is available, and the city is on board.
But now as that blight is about to disappear, the Colorado Department of Transportation has decided to replace it with new blight in the form of very large, very shiny traffic-light-signal boxes and crossing button panels.
I can only hope CDOT maintains their appearance by putting away some money to keep them clean.
You know I’m kidding. History tells us the new shiny boxes are a perfect canvas for graffiti: posters, fliers, drunken quotes and who knows what else. The fact they are owned by CDOT could prevent the city from even having the legal right to keep them clean.
As far as the new crossing panels, my only question is: Why are they only in English? We do have a huge Spanish-speaking local and visitor population. And what about the Italians? Personally, I love the Italians.
I was told one reason for the new crossing-button panels was to assist the handicapped. According to my research, we’ve never had a handicap-related crossing-the-street incident.
Besides, if we can ban plastic bags, maybe we should ban the handicapped from crossing the street?
My point is this – stop in the name of visual aesthetics.
CDOT can’t get out of their own way when it comes to maintaining the roads, so why are they now overseeing traffic signals?
I would suggest that CDOT redirect some of their funding and hire a director of visual aesthetics or just go fill a pothole.
With many lingering questions still surrounding the fate of Aspen’s historic Old Powerhouse, City Council decided during Monday’s work session to hold off on providing staff direction on moving the preservation project forward until more information can be presented.