Businesses call neglected Denver road a safety hazard

Businesses surrounding one major road causes serious pains for drivers in the area.

DENVER - Businesses along 52nd Avenue in Northeast Denver believe their stretch of roadway could be the city's worst and they blame neglect.

Commercial truck driver Eric Powers emailed 9NEWS Thursday morning, hoping to draw attention to the rough ride he has been navigating for years.

Between Colorado Boulevard and Dahlia, 52nd Avenue is the dividing line between Denver and Commerce City. Most of the bumps are in the lane closest to Denver.

Businesses on both sides worry about safety.

“It's heavily used,” said Cornerstone Coatings President Raymond Kummer. “UPS is down the road. They've got hundreds of trucks that cross it on a daily basis. We have 25 people that work here. We're surrounded by businesses. So it's not an obscure off-the-beaten-path road. It's a major thoroughfare."

Poor drainage has created drop-offs on both sides of the two-lane road.

As drivers shift to avoid bumps, they also face the threat of hitting those deep grooves.

“That’s what you have to be careful of when you’re passing somebody, is not getting into that gully because it could flip your car potentially,” Kummer said.

Trucking companies along the route are particularly sensitive to the road’s condition.

The Denver Cartage Company has been doing business along 52nd Avenue for about 20 years, and workers say the road hasn’t been repaved once in that time.

“They’ve always just patched the potholes,” said Denver Cartage manager Cory Musich. “You hate to drive on that side of the road. You want to go to the left a little bit to avoid all the potholes."

Denver Public Works says that stretch of road is on a list of improvements linked to a bond measure voters must approve. Otherwise, repaving work is prioritized based on annual assessments.

“When we assess which streets need to be paved we looked at this one compared to the other streets around Denver,” Denver Public Works spokeswoman Heather Burke said.  “And this one was not highly traveled.  So, but again, we do know it's due for improvement.  It's in poor condition, and that's why it's on the list."

Denver plans to present its next GO Bond authorization to voters in November.

If approved, Denver Public Works estimates 52nd could be repaved as early as next year.

© 2017 KUSA-TV


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