DENVER (CBS4)– People who live in one Denver neighborhood say they’ve had problems with a road plagued with crashes and street racers. The stretch is along Alameda Avenue from Sheridan Boulevard to Federal Boulevard.
That 1½ miles has become a target for what neighbors call dangerous activity. That stretch is also CO Highway 26, and because it’s designed like a highway it has become problematic.
“You have schools and recreation centers and housing and destinations that people are trying to walk to take transit to and so it’s just inherently unsafe,” says Jill Locantore, the Executive Director of WalkDenver, a pedestrian advocacy group.
Locantore said the road design combined with the high population density makes Alameda between Federal and Sheridan is one of the deadliest streets in the city.
“When the road has multiple lanes and is very wide, without frequent traffic signals or places for pedestrians to cross the street, people just naturally drive fast. It also invites people who want to do things like drag racing,” said Locantore.
That was the cause of the street’s most recent deadly crash in which someone was hit by a street racer while he was crossing Alameda at Sheridan.
Denver police is aware of the issue. So far this year they have had 64 crashes on that stretch, four of them involving pedestrians. That’s why they have conducted 12 traffic enforcement operations in that area since the beginning of the year.
Locantore said enforcement alone is a good start but not enough, “Until we redesign the street, we can expect fatalities to continue to happen.”
In a statement, Denver Public Works said they are looking to make safety improvements along Alameda from Sheridan to Lipan as well as funding opportunities to make those improvements. They are also assessing the latest crash locations along Alameda to see if any near-term improvements can be made.