The City of Boulder Cares

I was going to open up this post by saying, “Or at least they want us to think so,” except that such cynicism turns out to be entirely unwarranted. But about that, more in a moment.

A Perilous Road Hazard

Peril Averted!

The City of Boulder website has a link entitled, “Report potholes, street and sidewalk issues.” Very clear and straightforward, that. I had been thinking that it would be the work of a morning to navigate a chthonic labyrinth of telephone touch-tone menus in order to finally earn the privilege of being told that no, deep and gaping holes in the middle of the bike lane on 30th Street were in fact Someone Else’s Problem. But as it turns out, the link I wanted was right here: “Report potholes, street and sidewalk issues.” Bingo.

The link leads to a web form via which you can make your report. You can even upload photos of the problem you’re reporting. Which is super cool, I think. I uploaded this photo here (the first one).

And the reason I’m not saying “At least, City of Boulder wants us to think they care” is this: Not 24 hours later, there was an email in my inbox assuring me that my report had been passed along to Utility Maintenance crews and that the photo I uploaded had succeeded in driving the point home. (“Yikes,” was my correspondent’s word.) And then, not two hours after that, I had another email telling me that the crews had found the hole, explaining me where the hole had come from, (“asphalt core,” was my correspondent’s word; it was not related to the utilities infrastructure) and reassuring me that the crews had already patched it so that no bicyclist would come to grief. (See second photo.)

So, yes, the City of Boulder does care.

And the reason I’m bothering telling you so is, well, blogs aren’t just for complaining. When things work the way they should, that ought to be just as newsworthy as when they fall apart. People can get really cynical about municipal, county, and state governing bodies, to the point of sounding a litlte smug when they predict bureaucratic inertia. Y’know, like, “You don’t really expect anything to be done about this, do you? Wake up!” But in this case, something was done, it was done promptly, and it was done with a level of responsiveness that blew my expectations out of the water.

I just think people ought to get credit for doing a good job, that’s all. So there you go.

6 Comments so far

  1. Tree (unregistered) on March 22nd, 2007 @ 8:28 pm

    Yeah, and the problem with people sitting on their asses and assuming that the city won’t do anything is that if they don’t speak up, then the city definitely won’t do anything…which I guess will just give them more to complain about. Meh.

  2. Jake (unregistered) on March 22nd, 2007 @ 9:38 pm

    Hmmm… I don’t know. I still lean toward cynicism.
    South Boulder Rd *IS* a pothole — directly in front of the major RTD station, no less. It’s been that way since I started my new job nearby on Jan 29.

    Then again, I’m not sure I actually want them to do any work on it… Have you been by Arapahoe & Foothills lately?

  3. Nicole J. LeBoeuf-Little (unregistered) on March 22nd, 2007 @ 10:24 pm

    But hey, they’re “half way done”! According to the construction zone approach signs, anyway.

    I dunno, try reporting that bit of road and see what happens. I know what you’re talking about–the entry ramp from there onto Foothills is awful. I suspect it would be more of a production to fix than a single hole, though. It’s such a high-traffic area, and a construction zone would block a lot of access.

  4. Tree (unregistered) on March 23rd, 2007 @ 2:25 pm

    “Then again, I’m not sure I actually want them to do any work on it… Have you been by Arapahoe & Foothills lately?”

    I see your point.

  5. Phil (unregistered) on April 1st, 2007 @ 1:17 pm

    Hah, I do a search for Irish black pudding and whose name do I see. Great to run into you in this little internet world of ours. :)

  6. Nicole J. LeBoeuf-Little (unregistered) on April 3rd, 2007 @ 11:37 am

    Bwahaha! Phil! Long time, no see… Were you looking for a recipe? One of the staff at Conor O’Neill’s said that their black pudding is house made, but they might not have understood the question when I asked. If you’re still in town maybe you should inquire there.

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