Yes, everytime I run into someone downtown they say, “are you going to write about the sidewalks on Washington Street?”
Truth is, I’m totally avoiding Washington Street if I can help it. A bunch of things are conspiring to result in there often being no sidewalk on either side of Washington Street.
One thing is good, we like it, new sidewalks are being installed, yay! However, when work is being done on a sidewalk, there needs to be a place for people to go, either make pedestrians cross if there is no room, or block off a secion of the road.
Also blocking the sidewalks are the construction of the Coastway Bank at the old Washington Trust location. For that, there totally should have been a lane taken to put pedestrians into. That has been a long term closure and you can’t just take the sidewalk without replacing the space for pedestrians. It has resulted in people walking in the street.
The final thing mucking up the sidewalk is the Narrow (aka Arnold) Building. I don’t have the full story about what is up there, I know there is a hollow sidewalk (i.e. the basement extends under the sidewalk) and a lack of funds. At this location, barrels have been put out to create a lane for pedestrians, but those barrels seem to grow legs and walk their way back to the edge of the roadway somehow.
So, that’s what I’m not liking right now. The good news, looks like Coastway is almost ready to open, re-opening the sidewalk with it, and the sidewalk replacement is moving along at a pretty good clip (and there are tree wells marked out!). So, we should have some nice new sidewalks soon.