Saturday, September 17, 2005


Many of us travel Martin Luther King Boulevard, through Rockefeller Park and Wade Park, between Chester and the Shoreway and, for the architecture-admiring among us, the four turn-of-the-century bridges that serve as road overpasses are perhaps the best part of the journey. The Wade Park Avenue bridge has been, perhaps, the most-admired of the four, primarily because of its romantic, curving pedestrian stairway. It has often been the subject of many a photograph. Tragically, the century-long wear and tear on this stairway has caused some breakage on a few of the individual stairs. Around two years ago (or has it been even longer than that?), the City 'saw fit' to place 'barricades' at both bottom and top of the stairway. Today -- years later -- the situation is unchanged. Apparently, this matter was referred to the "Deferred Maintenance Department". All four of the bridges are City Landmarks, but, that does not free them from the jurisdiction of the "Deferred Maintenance Department". What is the City waiting for? Another mayor? Or, perhaps for the problem to worsen so that they have an excuse to demolish the entire bridge? Bottom line: these 'barricades' are an insult to the artistic character of the bridge, and the Park the bridge rests upon.