To: Clearwater Mayor, City Council and City Management
Subject: Clearwater Beach Pedestrian Underpass
I was amazed to read the City Engineer's comment that the underpass may not be replaced because 'there is a consensus that no one uses it".
Think about it. The only way to go between north of the roundabout and the south is to the west side of Mandalay in front of Pier 60. Residents and a lot of tourists make their own way across the causeway and roundabout anyways and this will exasperate that situation. It is extremely dangerous now and will worsen for both motorists and pedestrians. There are no fences directional signs or anything else to guide walkers to the west side.
Police stationed there? - a joke - I have not seen one officer of any kind to stop or control the flood of traffic.
The underpass should be reinforced with fencing and signs along the causeway, or put in a pedestrian crosswalk in the causeway.
To: Ken Robulak
Subject: FW: Clearwater Beach Pedestrian Underpass
Thank you for your e-mail regarding the subject pedestrian bridge. The closure of the underpass was a result of a recent structural inspection performed by city staff. This inspection revealed that the steel superstructure of the walkway has severe, advanced, oxidation and corrosion. This seven-year-old structure has a manufacturer's warranty of 15 years and city staff is currently in discussion with the manufacturer to determine what repair or replacement options are available to the city.
It honestly was the opinion of various city staff that this underpass was used infrequently except by fisherman and vagrants. Based on the volume of e-mail we have received, that is obviously not the case. We hope to have an opinion from the manufacturer soon as to the integrity of the structure and whether it can be easily repaired or if it needs replaced. As soon as we get a structural clearance we will reopen it.
Michael D. Quillen, P.E., Director of Engineering,City of Clearwater