Neighborhood Addresses Dangerous Sidewalks
A local neighborhood is calling attention to an often ignored problem in the Pittsburgh area: sidewalk maintenance. Residents of the Spring Garden neighborhood, many of whom are over the age of 65, have become increasingly concerned over "deplorable" sidewalk conditions. The sidewalks are covered with weeds and have been reduced to rubble in many locations, and in winter, the sidewalks are virtually impassable. Some residents, including those with walkers and wheelchairs, find it safer to walk on Spring Garden Avenue than risk falling on a sidewalk. Originally, residents planned to call city officials' attention to the situation, but now they're facing an unforeseen problem.
Most properties along Spring Garden Avenue are not owned by the city, meaning that the property owners are responsible for the sidewalks on their properties. While residents could potentially repair their own sidewalks, that wouldn't address the problem of numerous abandoned and empty lots. For these areas, Spring Garden residents have the option of reporting the unaccounted-for sidewalks to the city to be cited for repair, but by doing that, they risk having the entire neighborhood cited and fined instead of just those absent property owners.
Out of concern for fellow neighbors, residents have agreed a consensus must be made as to if the neighborhood will handle the sidewalks themselves, or if they will contact the city at the risk of being cited. Regardless, the neighborhood plans to take action in order to keep residents safe, especially the elderly, who use sidewalks often due to limited midday bus service in the area.
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