Video: 17th & Lafayette Construction Puts Parking Before Pedestrians

A rendering of Park 17, a 108-unit, eight-story development under construction in City Park West.
A rendering of Park 17, a 108-unit, eight-story development under construction in City Park West.

Editor’s note: Another construction company has blocked a sidewalk, endangering pedestrians on a stretch of 17th Avenue in the City Park West neighborhood next to the Denver Bicycle Cafe.

A few on-street parking spots could be removed during construction to add a safe walkway on the high-speed, one-way thoroughfare that zooms through the community, says Jonathon Stalls of Pedestrian Dignity, who made the video.

“The thing that gets at me the most is the automobiles,” he says in the video. “It’s okay to park cars, and maybe a total of what, seven cars, and that’s allowed, that’s legal. But we can’t turn that into a protected walkway for pedestrians and everyone who’s moving on this side of the street.”

Stalls says the blocked access for people on foot has existed for months and he has contacted the city multiple times about the problem but received no response. Google Street View shows sidewalk access cut off during its last image capture in the area in November of last year.

The construction is part of the Park 17 development, which Denver Infill says will provide 190 housing units in an eight-story building. The San Antonio-based developer Lynd is behind the project.

Denver’s Department of Public Works plans to change its rules related to how construction companies route sidewalk users around worksites later this year and has promised to hold a public meeting about its recommendations this fall.

Under the new rules, the city will ensure “safe and convenient access around a project site, including pedestrians, people on bikes and scooters, transit riders and drivers,” according to a March statement from Heather Burke, a spokesperson for DPW.

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