Foot Traffic Flat

18 Jul 19
Thomas J. Salerno

Xesh leaned back in his inertia seat and patiently awaited planetfall. This trip to Otruk III had been nearly a year in the planning and the most critical stage, getting through Customs, was fast approaching. He had sent his equipment on ahead several months ago marked as “camping supplies” (which was true enough, as far […]

18 Jul 19
Yahoo over Cow Corner

The power and influence of the internet can be felt and seen in a variety of different ways. The constant churn of information and updates dictate that people and places can be launched into the mainstream in manners and ways that were simply not possible for previous generations. As that famous advert for a Canon […]

18 Jul 19
Sterling Journal-Advocate
The S-Curve project is on track as far as overall time schedule, but it’s not meeting the milestones it should be. That was the message from Joel McCracken, project engineer with the Colorado Department of Transportation, when he gave an update on the project Wednesday at a Rotary Club meeting. McCracken started by reviewing the various parts of the project. The S-curve alignment will use the abandoned railroad right of way between the intersections of Fourth and Chestnut Streets and Fifth, Division and Main Streets to connect CO 14 and US 6 in the east-west direction. It will also include conversion of several one-way streets to two-way streets, intersection improvements and signalization, reconstruction of West Main, and a complete mill and overlay of US 138. Fourth Street and several blocks of Third Street will devolve to city streets, with the state-maintained roadway being relocated along the S-curve and down Division to connect US 6 south of Sterling. Colorado Department of Transportation were hard at work on a portion of W. Main Street’s westbound lanes Wednesday, July 17, 2019. Storm sewer work in the area is just now starting. Joel McCracken, project engineer for the S-Curve project, is hopeful they will be able to complete work on W. Main before winter, but admited they may not be able to do the eastbound lanes until next year. “We got a little bit of a late start, some of that was weather, some of that was contractor performance, scheduling, we’ve got 25 subcontractors on this project, managing all this for the prime contractor (Parsons Construction Group), not even just CDOT, is quite tasking,” McCracken said. He did acknowledge the storm sewer work, which is a lot of what’s going on right now, is lagging. “We are behind schedule,” McCracken said. On Poplar Street between Third and Fourth Streets, in front of the U.S. Post Office, there is a massive hole right now. According to McCracken, that’s where the guts of the main storm drainage trunk ties into what goes down to the South Platte River and the existing 24-inch pipe in that area is being upsized to a 54-inch pipe. “We’re more than tripling the amount of capacity that we can put under the road, hopefully to alleviate that street flooding that happens on W. Main Street when you get a one-inch rainstorm in the middle of the summer. We’re just increasing it to be as big as we can possibly fit under the road,” he said, explaining that Sterling is so flat that it isn’t possible to get a lot of slope underground, but storage is doable. When they were digging to put the pipe in on Poplar Street crews hit a lot of water, so in that one block area they had to sink three 40-foot wells and put in six-inch pumps just to draw the water down enough in order for crews could be working in a dry bed. “That’s kind of held things up,” McCracken said. The area of Poplar Street between Fourth and Fifth Streets, where the S-curve is going to go, is seeing a lot of storm sewer work too and has also had water issues. “We are gaining on it, but we’re behind schedule with that,” McCracken said. With CDOT starting work on some areas of town before they finish others it has created some headaches for motorists, and they are trying to address the issue. “We’re hoping to start finishing some of the other areas before we get too carried away with others,” McCracken said. On W. Main Street, the westbound lanes are completely torn out and storm sewer work is now starting in that area. “I’m not happy with the progress on W. Main,” McCracken said. Though he is still hopeful they will be able to finish all of the work on that street before winter, he did admit they might not be able to do the eastbound lanes until next year. “We opened up (work on) W. Main back in June, we really weren’t quite ready for it, we had so much other work going on, but if we didn’t start then we weren’t going to have a prayer of getting it done,” McCracken said. “We may still not; depending on how the storm sewer goes we may not get it done this year.” He explained even though the eastbound lanes, where the city put in new water line, are worse, they had to start with the westbound side because that’s where the storm sewer trunk goes and it has to be put in before they can start work on the other side. McCracken also addressed the one-way street concrete patching, where they just pull out single panels, which has been completed. “It’s kind of tough because you go out there and look and you see well that panel look terrible and so does that one, it’s really hard to tell because it’s all so bad, where do you start, where do you end? So, we took what we considered were the worst ones that we could fit in our budget and hopefully the rest will last until we can get back and finish the section of Third from Chestnut up to kind of Baja Taco intersection,” he said. The conversion of Third and Fourth Streets from one-way to two streets is still in progress, it got delayed because of the unforeseen work they had pop up. McCracken said the conversion could happen as soon as the mid-August. When it does occur, CDOT will put up signs and signals to make people aware of the new traffic pattern. On S. Division Avenue they have had to remove some trees that were older and at risk of dying. McCracke explained if you are inside the drip line with any sort of construction the tree is likely to die, plus there were too many big surface roots crews were going to have to cut through. First Presbyterian Church asked for some trees to be left in front of the church, which CDOT agreed to, with the church understanding there is a possibility they might die. One part of the project that is nearly complete is US 138. Asphalt paving is done, a turn lane has been added into Northeastern Junior College, and all that’s left to do is final stripping and delineator replacements and shoulder work. In regards to roads in bad shape that aren’t part of the project and when they will be repaired McCracken pointed out “getting CDOT to invest $20 to $25 million into Sterling is a task. I always remind people that we don’t have the tax revenue out here, we can’t just put in a mill levy in and start raising money for infrastructure projects and getting CDOT to actually invest that much money out here is quite an accomplishment, not for me, but for my superiors.” The entire S-Curve project is expected to be completed by the end of next summer.
18 Jul 19
Simple Simon Does...

Earlier in July, my brother was over visiting me in Germany. His family and our mother were flying in separately and we had to pick them up from Berlin airport on a Monday morning. Forever the adventurers we decided to head to Berlin a day early and spend some time checking it out. So, at […]

18 Jul 19
Archy Worldys

The floods that stalled inland barges on the Arkansas River last month have restricted traffic to and from Little Rock Harbor. However, barges still can not be pushed upriver from the state capital as floods and rapid floods have disrupted the navigation channel in this section of the McClellan-Kerr-Arkansas river navigation system. The navigation channel […]

18 Jul 19
Kensington Effect

Previous Chapter Next Chapter A young looking man with straight, black hair combed into a simple, parted style sat behind a desk in a small corner office within the Bureau of Empowered Affairs building in downtown Phoenix. He held a pen horizontally in his mouth, lips around the middle of it, while typing on the […]

18 Jul 19
Keycaps

Moira had been working at the Ring Room from the day she graduated from culinary school, and she’d only seen the truck come twice. There was no logo painted on its side, and its license plate was always a temporary one. When it showed up, whoever saw it first was supposed to tell Babirye immediately. […]

18 Jul 19
One Grand Adventure

Day 17, mile 0419 to 0444, Mill Creek Summit to Soledad Canyon Rd Distance; 26.7 miles, time; 6:20, 4.2 mph average, minimum elevation 2262, maximum elevation 6370, total ascent 3797, total descent 6520. Total miles traveled 411 I woke up to the steady whine of the commuters heading for work over Nuremburg West.  I had […]

17 Jul 19
jredtripp

This year I had some holiday time to burn, and having had a successful Death Tour Ride I felt all trained up for the hills and decided that the Triple Bypass sounded like a good idea. I convinced my friend Erika to join me on this adventure since she seems to like riding hills, too. […]

17 Jul 19
Basketball Scouting

CONTEXT Top-ranked prospect in the 2020 high school class[1]; Temecula, California native who played his sophomore and junior seasons at Rancho Christian School; Turned 18 last month[2]; Listed at seven-feet tall by the Compton Magic[3] with a thin frame for someone his height, speculated to be around the 192-pound range[4]; Measured with a seven-foot-four wingspan[5]; […]

17 Jul 19
Around Our e-Table

Storyline: Home to home westward Chiang Mai has been hyped by many and for years. I had read a lot about it, and Alex had watched several videos of people extolling its virtues.

17 Jul 19
Ali Walks Far

July 7 Mile 2317.7 to mile 2295.4, White Pass, 22.3 PCT miles + 0.5 miles off trail to the Kracker Barrel store (NOT the restaurant) at White Pass , 22.8 Mike’s total Total PCT miles hiked: 714.5 miles Running : 815.8 Getting up early is rough, but it’s always made slightly easier when you know […]

17 Jul 19
In 4 The Long Haul

Majestic waterfalls, blankets of snow and dominating granite mountains are why Yosemite National Park is an unforgettable natural phenomenon. First protected in 1864, Yosemite National Park has plenty to enjoy. From its waterfalls to its deep valleys and from its meadows to its ancient giant sequoias, the park is a must visit for any nature […]

17 Jul 19
Like Locals Blog

It was my first weekend back and Sam was in town. Being the considerate friend that I am I devoted absolutely no time at all to thinking about what to do once he got here. Luckily my girlfriend Alexa has lived in Budapest for 29 years. I sometimes joke that she is the ‘Local’ and […]