So I read that the city is getting ready to rebuild Florida Road, with inbound traffic using Florida but outbound
traffic detouring to Main and then up 32nd Street. What the heck? Have you driven on 32nd lately? It's a war zone, with
craters the size of kitchen sinks and a mud hole by north City Market. Is town government totally insane? And don't
even get me started on the Chapman Hill snowcat/snowmaking thing. Grrr. - Really Angry Citizen
Angry Citizen" isn't the only one out there who wonders about 32nd Street. Seems that most denizens of Animas City
have raised their guard - and their eyebrows - over this midwinter detour plan.
Action Line feels your pain. So does Mrs. Action Line. And so does her zippy little car.
That poor vehicle has been pummeled this winter. Its suspension has been under siege since December, when potholes
began forming beneath massive ice ruts caused by the city's bizarre inability to plow.
If you think Florida Road is bad, try driving the section of 32nd Street between East Third Avenue and Main Avenue. Be
sure the fillings in your teeth are well cemented. Fasten your seat belts.
And don't even attempt to drink coffee, else you'll decorate your lap with decaf.
In order to avoid the tire-swallowing depressions, one must negotiate a slalom route, often crossing the center line.
You'll need to leap over the wide canyon that has opened up along the railroad tracks.
And this is the designated detour for all outbound eastward traffic?
Set up some observation bleachers - we've got prime winter entertainment that will put the county fair demolition derby
Have a couple of trucks at the ready. And personal-injury attorneys. Gotta have lots of them, too. Let the show
OK. That's not entirely fair. Much has to do with nasty weather and not negligence.
For instance, the mud hole by City Market is the result of crews mending a broken water line on a cold, snowy December
night. Those poor guys were freezing their tootsies off while the rest of us were warm, inside and sedated by
television, a hot meal, alcohol or a combination thereof.
The crews put backfill in the hole, but it was too frigid and wet to apply an asphalt patch. Then the big snows began
to fall. The hole was left for later.
Well, now it's later.
Anyway, to your point, the city certainly is aware of 32nd Street's shortcomings.
According to the Streets Department, crews are scheduled to patch 32nd Street and Florida Road with bag mix" today -
weather pending, of course.
We should have both areas in good shape before the traffic diversion goes into place Wednesday," a Public Works
Department representative said.
Bag mix, by the way, also is known as cold patch. The asphalt comes premixed in a bag and is pounded down for a
temporary repair job. Think of it as putty for the streets.
So let's see how it goes Wednesday.
Maybe it will be so bad that we'll take those empty cold-mix bags, put them over our heads and long for the days of the
original Florida Road - which is a truly frightening thought.
The Mea Culpa Mailbag contains an interesting item from a loyal reader signed Confused."
I saw an ad in the paper for 'uncut kindling.' Is that an anomaly like 'smoke-free bingo,' a contradiction like
'all-season snow tires' or an oxymoron like 'yummy brussel sprouts?'
Maybe it's like the guy who admits he spends money with reckless abandon, and said 'Last month, I blew $5,000 at a
reincarnation seminar. I got to thinking, what the hell ... you only live once!'"
E-mail questions to actionline@
durangoherald.com or mail them to Action Line, The Durango Herald, 1275 Main Ave., Durango, CO 81301. You can request
anonymity if you sauté brussel sprouts with carrots, parsnips, potatoes and chicken breasts in a large saucepan filled
with stock. Top with scallions and parsley. Serve with horseradish. Yum! Seriously.