KFnet in T-Town

Jun. 29, 2009 at 9:03am

A Cleaner, More Passable Schuster


Not for cars, mind you, but pedestrians and cyclists. The walkway that connects Old Town with downtown Tacoma is a windy but lovely path that makes a great link between the two areas of our fair city. Being at the edge of the bluff, however, there's lots of vegetation that grows to help stabilize the hillside but also because of water that seeps from its slopes. Once those weeds and berry bushes get a hint of the warmer Sun of spring and summer they explode and often spill right over the sidewalk making it unpleasant and barely passable at times without my biking to work legs getting whipped with reeds and sharp needles.

Actually had a chance to say "thank you" in person this morning as they were out again to continue the clean up.

Enter the Tacoma streets crews. All I can say is "bravo!" Last Friday they were out in full force and cleared back the brush along this entire stretch of trail. My ride in this morning was completely unobstructed and we all have them to thank. While we citizens of our City of Destiny like to complain that they should fill more potholes and generally give us more of their services while not paying a dime more in taxes I'm always willing once in a while to notice those little things and simply say "thank you" and keep up the good work!

comments [10]  |  posted under schuster parkway, shrubbery, street crews, tacoma


by fredo on 6/29/2009 @ 9:43am
I like your posting Kevin. Well, we do get some good services from the city and we should occasionally acknowledge this as you have done.

OTOH it's OK to point out when the city funds unneeded wants (such as fragile outdoor art, giveaways to multinational companies, basketball games, etc.), and then identifies the reluctance taxpayers have for increasing taxes as the reason basic services can't be provided.

by L.S.Erhardt on 6/29/2009 @ 10:53am
The Bayside trails are very under-used.

It's amazing how many people don't know that one can actually walk/bike from Downtown/Foss Waterway to the Ruston Tunnel.

On the other hand, that path scares the bejeebus out of me... cars flying by at 50, 60 or faster only a few inches away is extremely unfriendly to humans.

by thriceallamerican on 6/29/2009 @ 11:14am
Wonder if they're removing any of the invasives. That trail is a hotbed of English ivy and blackberries...

by fredo on 6/29/2009 @ 11:26am
Good point thrice. If we fail to remove the invasives then our future is consigned to a regime of cut and control. Regarding the blackberry problem specifically- even if you cut these back aggressively they tend to send out bothersome new growth after just a few days of favorable growing conditions.

by KevinFreitas on 6/29/2009 @ 4:36pm
@Thorax: It's really not a bad route at all. I'd take it any day over "I" street or something like that. At least here you have a dedicated path to ride on.

@fredo: City government always has to balance between maintaining the status quo (e.g. basic services) and pushing forward with new ones. That's what growing cities do. It'd be ideal if both purposes could be "fully" funded (whatever that means) but that will never be the case so both will always receive attention and justifications and have to be treated, as they are, as distinct budget lines not to be crossed or even considered the same money.

Our city is very responsive and open for many of the basic services I've touched while a resident here. Dim streetlights, potholes, ugly graffiti signage, a clean path along Schuster, access to power at Frost Park, etc. I've always seen our City Council as a pretty responsive bunch too. Are they without their flaws? No chance. But, as you do with some of your complaints, I will likewise reflect on the positive from time to time.

by L.S.Erhardt on 6/29/2009 @ 7:03pm
I dunno, Kevin. Every time I run the trail I feel unsafe when I'm in those parts where there are no tree/vegetation/land buffers between me and the traffic.

by fredo on 6/29/2009 @ 9:36pm
KF @ Well I hope there are some tangible benefits to budgeting scarce tax dollars like a "growing city" beyond those you've cited.

Maybe we should aspire to "already grown up city" and try to maintain what we already have. Just a thought.:)

by L.S.Erhardt on 6/30/2009 @ 1:37am
@ Fredo....

You'd think that with the "sustainability" buzzword all over the media and on politician's lips, that our very own Sustainability Czar* would be all over maintaining what we have. Think of the great press you could get... But that is a logical argument, and we know politicians operate in another plane where time, logic, budgeting and accountability do not exist.

*You'd think more people would have issue with using the term "Czar" in any meaningful way within the US political system. I mean, c'mon... "Czar" is the Russian equivalent of "Caesar". Last time I checked, both the Russian Czars and the Roman Caesars were not exactly democratic in their ruling style. It escapes me why people are blindly accepting of "Czar" positions at the local and federal levels. Danger, Will Robinson!!!

by tommyllew on 6/30/2009 @ 8:24am
I've been riding over to Pearl Street, down through the Ruston Tunnel, along Ruston Way and then along this very path every morning on the way to work and agree with Kevin. Nice work on the cleanup.

Considering it's right next to a fast-moving, busy road, it really is a sweet little path for biking.

(Shameless political plug warning) By the way, Kevin Rojecki, City Council Candidate, is making bike paths a top priority for his campaign. I'd love to see more paths like this around the scenic parts of our city.

by L.S.Erhardt on 6/30/2009 @ 1:26pm
I'd love to see a some more love for runners.
Bike paths are great, but they tend to be on streets. Obviously not cool for runners. That trail thru downtown on the old train tracks is soooooo promising. We still need more accessibility for folks who chose to get around without 2 tons of steel to protect them.


Although I have another home on the web I thought it might be nice to lead by example a bit and put this blog system up to the test myself.

So far, so good... Funny how I build web tools for other people that are far better than the one's I have setup over on KFnet.


Hey Clear Channel, Clean Up Your Crap!

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