Challenge worth consideration

Thursday, September 1, 2022

I was pleased to see Mr. Stanton pick up the call for a reconstruction of the walking tunnel which leads from the East side of Glendive to the West. It has been there for over 100 years and as he noted, it is a product of the railroad.

In the early days of the community there was no way to get across the tracks except by walking over the tracks. Both the Allen Street Underpass and the Barry Street Underpass are newer answers to that need. Mayor Jimison and the City Council have worked on this project for a number of years as well as the new administration. The walking underpass belongs to the BNSF. Upkeep is their responsibility. The crew that does this work is based elsewhere these days so there really is no one around to do this work. BNSF thought the City should take it over, but at the time that was unworkable. Others have said the Barry Underpass is right there and a second one is not needed. Vandals have been another issue.

If our access to the East side of town is to be the two underpasses and the railroad will not take responsibility for the walkway then my belief is that the walkway should be sealed off as a hazard. Many years ago the first depot in Glendive sat in that area of town so the walking underpass made more sense and more people walked, but times change and how we deal with this needs some thoughtful management. Mr. Stanton has noted an unsightly and dangerous issue for the community.

It seems to me a challenge has been issued, one worthy of consideration.

Avis Anderson

Glendive City Council member 2015-2021